The Screen Actors Guild Awards ceremony was held last night, and two actors in book-to-screen adaptations won trophies: Anya Taylor-Joy in the Netflix miniseries The Queen’s Gambit, based on Walter Tevis’ 1983 novel, and Mark Ruffalo in I Know This Much Is True, the HBO miniseries adaptation of Wally Lamb’s 1998 bestseller.
Taylor-Joy received the award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series; she won a Golden Globe for the same role in February. Nicole Kidman in the HBO miniseries The Undoing, based on Jean Hanff Korelitz’s 2014 novel, You Should Have Known, and Kerry Washington in the Hulu miniseries version of Celeste Ng’s Kirkus-starred 2017 bestseller Little Fires Everywhere, had also been up for the same honor.
Ruffalo won for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series; the award follows Golden Globe and Emmy wins for his portrayal of troubled twin brothers. His fellow nominees all appeared in book adaptations, as well: Bill Camp in The Queen’s Gambit; Hugh Grant in The Undoing; Daveed Diggs in the Disney+ special of the musical Hamilton, based on the Kirkus-starred 2004 biography Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow; and Ethan Hawke in the Showtime miniseries of James McBride’s 2013 historical novel.
The SAG Awards are commonly seen as a bellwether for the Academy Awards, but no nominees in book-to-film adaptations took home statuettes. They included Frances McDormand in Nomadland, based on Jessica Bruder’s 2017 nonfiction book; Amy Adams and Glenn Close in the Netflix film of J.D. Vance’s 2016 memoir, Hillbilly Elegy; and Helena Zengel in News of the World, based on Paulette Jiles’ 2016 Western novel.
David Rapp is the senior Indie editor.