"The Bear" stars win TV honors at Hollywood's SAG awards


By Lisa Richwine

LOS ANGELES, Feb 24 (Reuters) - "The Bear" stars Jeremy Allen White and Ayo Edebiri snagged television honors on Saturday at the Screen Actors Guild Awards, one of Hollywood's biggest ceremonies leading up to the Oscars.

The awards were voted on by members of the SAG-AFTRA actors union, and winners and attendees reflected on their early days trying to make it in show business.

"I am so honored to be in this community," White said as he accepted the award for best actor in a television comedy. "I wanted to be part of this my whole life. I had no backup plan."

His co-star, Edebiri, won best actress in a TV comedy for the show about a gourmet chef trying to turn around his family's Chicago sandwich shop.

Ali Wong was named best actress in a limited series for road rage drama "Beef." She thanked her 83-year-old mother who was in the audience.

"I know it was really hard when I told you I wanted to do standup comedy, and I hope you feel like it all worked out," she said.

Blockbuster movies "Barbie" and "Oppenheimer" were facing off again for the night's top award of best motion picture cast. Others in the running are "The Color Purple," "Killers of the Flower Moon" and "American Fiction."

The ceremony took place after SAG-AFTRA staged a four-month strike against Hollywood studios last year to fight for higher pay and protections around artificial intelligence.

"It is especially meaningful to be here with us all together again, for this occasion, after going though a very difficult time with the strike," actor Idris Elba said in opening remarks.

The ceremony was streaming live on Netflix NFLX.O for the first time, part of the streaming service's efforts to expand its live programming.

SAG-AFTRA's film choices are closely watched because actors form the largest group of voters for next month's Academy Awards, the film industry's top prizes.

A win for director Christopher Nolan's historical drama "Oppenheimer" would bolster its frontrunner status for best picture at the Oscars. The movie about the race to build the first atomic bomb has picked up top prizes at the Golden Globes, the British Academy Film Awards and other ceremonies.

If feminist doll adventure "Barbie" or another competitor prevails, it would upend the race to the Oscars on March 10.

In SAG's acting contests, Emma Stone will vie for best actress for her role as a woman revived from the dead in dark comedy "Poor Things." Her competition includes "Barbie" lead actress Margot Robbie and Lily Gladstone, star of "Killers of the Flower Moon," a drama about the murders of members of the Osage Native American community in 1920s Oklahoma.

Cillian Murphy, who played physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer, is nominated for best actor, against Bradley Cooper of "Maestro," "The Holdovers" star Paul Giamatti and others.

SAG-AFTRA also will hand out a lifetime achievement honor to Barbra Streisand, the award-winning actor, producer, director, singer and writer.

(Reporting by Lisa Richwine; Editing by Mary Milliken, Bill Berkrot and William Mallard)

((; Follow me on Twitter @LARichwine; 1-424-434-7324; Reuters Messaging:

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


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