My Night At (Not Covering) The SAG Awards - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

My Night At (Not Covering) The SAG Awards

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with Benedict Cumberbatch with Benedict Cumberbatch
Swag bag Swag bag
Jared Leto and Philomena Lee Jared Leto and Philomena Lee

I have attended my share of award shows. Other than the local Emmy's, I'm  always on the other side of the velvet rope yelling at the celebrities to come talk to us. It's not one of my favorite jobs, I'll admit. But Saturday night, I attended the Screen Actor Guild Awards with a nominee.  The cast of Arrested Development was nominated for Outstanding Performance by an ensemble in a comedy series. I was the lucky plus one for one of the cast members.  (Its not hard to figure out who if you see the entire nominated cast list.)

A big, shiny black car came to drive us to the Shrine. We emerged and I imagined that the tech guy handling the arrivals cam, say, 'oh it's nobody.')  We walked through the metal detectors, right behind nominee Jim Parsons of the Big Bang Theory. I spotted Benedict Cumberbatch to my left who seemed as dazed as I to see all the camera suites for the likes of CNN, E Entertainment ET and others.  We walked the broad red carpet and saw a long line of TV cameras.  No one yelled, Susan, Susan come talk to us, but I did manage to find the Fox 11 camera so I could pretend someone was asking, "Who are you wearing?"  For the record, I was wearing, Dalia Macphee's gorgeous dark  grey gown with a black lace bodice. 

We followed the crowd and wound up jammed up as the actors waited to walk in front of the still photographers.  We waited patiently, since no one told us not to, but then I realized who was in the group with us. Downton Abby's Michelle Dockery was to my right, Cuba Gooding, Jr to my immediate left. I stepped on the train of Terrence Howard's wife's amazing gown, not once but twice.  I was close enough to Lupita Nyong'o to see how that elaborate turquoise neck piece was attached to the dress.  I saw cast members of Game of Thrones, Kerry Washington, Meryl Streep and the darling of the moment, Jennifer Lawrence. 

"Ummmm.  I don't think we should be in this line."  We found someone to let us out of the celebrity pen and into another lane of traffic for the less gilded. I say less gilded, but earlier I had seen Ron Howard and Brian Glazer walk in the auditorium, avoiding the photo line.  Once inside, it was no less surreal.  Come on, everyone knows there is a pecking order in Hollywood/the world.  So, when I looked for our seats, I fully expected to be on  the less desirable  side of the rectangular table. But instead, we had prime seats facing the stage.   I got to sit next to producer Mitch Hurwitz. I over heard one of the cast members grumble a little about having his back to the stage, but then again for camera angles it was probably planned to have cast members as close to the head of the table and double nominee Jason Bateman. 

The award ceremony went as you would expect, although I held my breath when Arrested Development's category came up. Modern Family took the statuettes and suddenly our table was almost empty. (Bathroom break, they all came back.)

After the ceremony, we headed to the People Magazine party. Cuba Gooding Jr. gave me a hug,  I saw the Modern Family cast, Johnny Galecki of Big Bang Theory, Jeremy Irons and Benedict Cumberbatch. I was on a mission to meet Benedict for a girl friend of mine.  He was very charming.  How else to describe someone who says, oh yes, I think I recognize you. Meantime, we discussed some of the subtleties of August: Osage County and I asked him what it was like to work with the likes of Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Sam Shephard, et al.  He said, it was daunting at first, but everyone was so welcoming he felt comfortable almost immediately.  

The party was jumping but we had another party to get to so we picked up our swag bags and headed for the Weinstein/Netflix party. 

By the way, this is what was inside the SAG swag bag. 

The Weinstein/Netflix party was amazing in its intimacy. We walked in and met the fabulous Margo Martindale of The Millers and August:Osage.  We then walked toward the pool and saw Kerry Washington in one booth, Bruce Dern and June Squib in another one. Alfre Woodard was there, Julia Roberts, the Modern Family cast and the real Philomena.  We were chatting with her when suddenly Jared Leto sat next to her and said, someone take our picture. 

Speaking of Philomena, she was absolutely a delight.  She told us what it was like for her to meet Judy Densch for the first time. She kept calling herself an ordinary woman who is just so amazed to be living this now extraordinary life.  We all also had a memorable conversation with Steve Coogan who starred in and wrote Philomena.  I told him I had heard the original book was quite dreary and he agreed.  He said, the book focused on Philomena's son and it was he who brought the journalist's story and his relationship to Philomena out to create the delightful script that became the multi nominated Philomena.  My final moment as Cinderella at the party came when I tapped 82 year old Rita Morena on the back and congratulated her for receiving her SAG Lifetime Achievement Award.  Everybody now, I like to be in America! 

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