LOS ANGELES – What went down backstage after the stars won their SAG Awards? USA TODAY was behind the scenes catching all the biggest moments.
Rami Malek used to stuff his headshots into pizza boxes
For years, as he tried to get his foot in the door in Hollywood, “Bohemian Rhapsody” winner Malek sent out his headshot and resume to every agent and casting director in town. He even put them in pizza boxes as part of his delivery work.
“One day, I get a call from the casting director of ‘Gilmore Girls.’ She said, ‘Can I speak to Rami Malek’s agent?’ I said, ‘Speaking.’ She said, ‘Is this Rami Malek?’ And I said, ‘Yes, it is.’ She said, ‘Do you have an agent, honey?’ I said, ‘No, I don’t. We’ll work on it,'” he told reporters backstage.
“She was laughing throughout (the conversation). It was three lines and a co-starring part on ‘Gilmore Girls.’ I said, ‘You’re laughing right now. It will take me 10 minutes to get to Warner Bros.’ She said, ‘All right, kid. Come on in,'” he remembered. “So, after years of delivering pizzas and stuffing my headshot into pizza boxes and to-go orders, someone finally called with a part. I went to her office and I got the job later that night.”
“Green Book” winner Mahershala Ali took on the film’s controversy
Ali was asked backstage about those who call “Green Book” historically inaccurate (including some members of Dr. Donald Shirley’s own family). Ali, who plays the world-renowned pianist, pointed to Shirley’s own source material – a series of audio tapes featuring the voices of Dr. Shirley and Tony “Lip” Vallelonga, which Deadline released Friday.
“Some of the things that are questioned can be answered in just listening to Dr. Shirley talk, which everybody is (able) to do. I think people need to go back and hear what Dr. Shirley has to say for himself,” he said.
Chrissy Metz was ready to ditch her train
“The train thing, I’m over it,” grinned the “This Is Us” star while backstage in her John Paul Ataker gown. “It’s coming off. I’ve got snaps on this thing, y’all!”
Stars let press folks try out holding their (heavy) awards
Show-and-tell made its debut in the pressroom, as “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” stars Kevin Pollak and Marin Hinkle roamed the aisles letting reporters hold their quite heavy SAG Awards trophies, which the show won for best comedy series ensemble.
“Feel the weight,” Pollak said, handing his Actor trophy to one reporter. “It’s unnecessarily heavy, that’s what I’m saying. Hinkle, for her part, said it could serve as a strong doorstop, but we’re guessing she won’t use it for that purpose.
‘Black Panther’ is way more specific than anyone realized, says T’Challa
“I don’t think people truly understand the amount of detail, the amount of mastery, that went into the hair and makeup, wardrobe, set design,” said Chadwick Boseman backstage, standing with his co-stars. “I think there’s a disconnect, maybe because it’s a superhero movie, maybe because it’s a black movie – but I don’t think people understand it’s the equivalent of somebody doing a period piece.”
He added: “To create an entire world from the most beautiful things from the (African) continent) and put all that together and cross all those lines of production and have people believe (Wakanda) is one country – I don’t think people grasp the difficulty, and how that informs our performances.”
Darren Criss did his burger best to gain weight for “Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story”
“(Andrew Cunanan) fluctuated weight so much during the course of the story, but there was no way we could pull that off,” says Criss, who won his SAG Actor for playing the killer. “But there was a week we thought we were and I probably had, like, four cheeseburgers and, like, five beers a day. One of the finer weeks of my life.”