MANILA, Philippines – Hit South Korean series Squid Game made history at the 2022 Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards, bagging three plums on Monday, February 28 (late Sunday, February 27 in the US).
Both Lee Jung-jae and Jung Ho-yeon scored their first SAG win after being awarded Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor and Female Actor, respectively, in a Drama Series.
Lee, who portrayed Player 456 Seong Gi-hun in the series, beat Brian Cox (Succession), Billy Crudup (The Morning Show), Kieran Culkin (Succession), and Jeremy Strong (Succession) for the award.
“Oh my, thank you so much! This is truly huge, that’s happened to me,” Lee said in Korean while accepting his award onstage. A translator accompanied him.
He continued, “I did write something but I don’t think I’m going to get to reading it. Thank you so much SAG Awards and thank you to the global audience for all of your love for Squid Game. And thank you Squid Game team.”
Meanwhile, Jung, who played Kang Sae-byeok, got emotional during her acceptance speech. “First and foremost, thank you so much,” she said through her translator.
“I have sat many times watching you on the big screen dreaming of one day becoming an actor. I just want to say thank you so much,” she continued.
She also acknowledged her fellow actors who “opened the door” for her in the industry and ended her speech by giving a shout out to her Squid Game crew.
Jung was nominated in the category alongside Jennifer Aniston (The Morning show), Elisabeth Moss (The Handmaid’s Tale), Sarah Snook (Succession), and Reese Witherspoon (The Morning Show.)
Prior to the live awarding ceremony held at the Santa Monica Barker Hanger, SAG announced that Squid Game won the Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Television Series. It outdid Cobra Kai, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Loki, and Mare of Easttown.
Squid Game’s win marks the first time for a non-English television series and a Korean television show to receive an award at the SAG Awards.
Following the release of the nominees in January 2022, show creator Hwang Dong-hyuk issued a statement to celebrate the show’s milestone. “I want to truly thank not only the cast who have been nominated today but also all of the supporting and the near-300 background talent. Squid Game would never have been what it became without the devotion and hard work of every single one of you. You deserve all the glory and credit,” he said.
The series was also nominated for the category Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series, but Succession took home the award.
Squid Game, a survival thriller series that premiered in September 2021, morphed popular childhood games into deadly survival challenges, with 456 players fighting against each other to win 45.6 billion South Korean won (or around P2 million).
It became Netflix’s biggest original series launch and is one of the streaming giant’s most-viewed series to date, with over 1.6 billion hours of streaming and a global audience of over 142 million households.
Squid Game also stars Park Hae-soo, Oh Young-soo, Anupam Tripathi, Kim Joo-ryoung, Heo Sung-tae, Wi Ha-joon and Lee Byung-hun. The series is confirmed to have a second season. – Rappler.com