“Manchester by the Sea” led the Screen Actors Guild award nominations on Wednesday, pitting the gritty drama against “Moonlight,” “Fences,” “Hidden Figures” and “Captain Fantastic” for best film cast ensemble, the group’s top prize.
“Manchester by the Sea,” about a working-class family dealing with multiple tragedies, got four nominations, including for lead actor Casey Affleck and supporting stars Michelle Williams and Lucas Hedges:, reports Reuters.
Independent drama “Moonlight,” about an impoverished black boy grappling with his sexuality, and “Fences,” a tense drama about an African-American family in the 1950s, scored three nominations each.
Musical romance “La La Land,” the current front-runner in Hollywood’s awards season, was shut out of SAG’s best ensemble category, which favors large casts, but it scored nominations for Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling.
Other notable omissions on Wednesday included comedy “20th Century Women,” which stars Annette Bening as a free-spirited single mother in the 1970s, and “Loving,” the real-life story of a couple who changed interracial marriage laws in Virginia.
The SAG list followed Monday’s Golden Globe nominations, where “La La Land” and “Moonlight” led the race, and precedes January’s Oscar nods.
The top SAG winners often go on to win Academy Awards. “Spotlight,” which took the best ensemble award earlier this year, was named best picture at the Oscars.
More than 100,000 actors vote on the annual SAG awards. The winners will be announced at a ceremony in Los Angeles on Jan. 29.
Affleck and Gosling will face Andrew Garfield for “Hacksaw Ridge,” Viggo Mortensen for “Captain Fantastic” and “Fences” star Denzel Washington for best actor.
Stone will vie for best actress alongside Amy Adams for “Arrival,” surprise nominee Emily Blunt for “The Girl on the Train,” front-runner Natalie Portman for “Jackie” and Meryl Streep for “Florence Foster Jenkins.”
In the television best drama race, HBO’s hit medieval fantasy series “Game of Thrones” and sci-fi western “Westworld” will compete against the final season of British period drama “Downton Abbey” and new Netflix shows “The Crown,” a British royal period drama, and 1980s sci-fi mystery “Stranger Things.”