The Deep South drama “The Help” won three prizes Sunday at the Screen Actors Guild Awards, including best actress for Viola Davis and supporting actress for Octavia Spencer.
“The Help” also claimed the guild’s ensemble award, the show’s equivalent of a best- picture prize.
Jean Dujardin won the lead-actor honor for “The Artist” as a silent-film superstar whose career crumbles when the sound era arrives.
Christopher Plummer won for supporting actor as an elderly dad who comes out as gay in “Beginners.”
The wins boost the actors’ prospects for the same honors at the Feb. 26 Academy Awards.
Plummer would become the oldest actor ever to win an Oscar at age 82, two years older than Jessica Tandy when she won best actress for “Driving Miss Daisy.”
On the television side, comedy series awards went to “Modern Family” for best ensemble; Alec Baldwin as best actor for “30 Rock”; and Betty White as best actress for “Hot in Cleveland.”
“You can’t name me, without naming those other wonderful women on ‘Hot in Cleveland,’” the 90-year-old White said. “This nomination belongs to four of us. Please, please know that I’m dealing them right in with this. I’m not going to let them keep this, but I’ll let them see it.”
The TV drama show winners were: Jessica Lange as best actress for “American Horror Story”; and Steve Buscemi as best actor for “Boardwalk Empire,” which also won the ensemble prize.
The winners at the SAG ceremony typically go on to earn Oscars.
All four acting recipients at SAG last year later took home Oscars — Colin Firth for “The King’s Speech,” Natalie Portman for “Black Swan” and Christian Bale and Melissa Leo for “The Fighter.”
Mary Tyler Moore received the guild’s life- time-achievement award.