SAG Awards predictions secret: Size matters for comedies like ‘Orange is the New Black,’ ‘Glee,’ ‘Desperate Housewives’ …

When it comes to rewarding the best comedic cast on television, the SAG Awards often simply go with the biggest cast. Recent winners like “Orange is the New Black” (2014-2016), “Glee” (2009), “Desperate Housewives” (2004-2005) and “Ally McBeal” (1998) all prevailed thanks in part to having the most cast members on the voting ballot. Interestingly enough, all four of these were also hour-long dramedies, which suggests SAG voters are more apt to give the prize to large casts when they’re also in large productions.

What does this statistic mean in terms of predicting the 2018 SAG Awards? “Orange is the New Black” once again boasts the biggest comedy cast with a record-setting 45 men and women nominated for the Netflix prison series. That’s up from 37 cast members in 2016, 34 in 2015, and 40 in 2014. Of this year’s other nominated ensembles, Netflix’s “GLOW” consists of 18 cast members, followed by HBO’s “Veep” at 15, ABC’s “Black-ish” at 11, and HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” at six.

If voters feel they’ve already aptly awarded “Orange is the New Black,” might we see the comedy with the next largest cast prevail on Sunday, January 21? That’s exactly what happened in 2006, when Screen Actors Guild members honored the second biggest cast, “The Office,” after giving the massive “Desperate Housewives” ensemble back-to-back victories.

To be eligible for a nomination as part of a show’s cast, SAG rules dictate that the actor 1) have appeared in more than half of the episodes originally aired during the eligible calendar year; and 2) have a series regular contract or guest star billing in a majority of episodes they appear in.

Below, see the cast breakdowns of the 2018 SAG comedy nominees, which is how they appear on the voting ballot.

“Black-ish” — Anthony Anderson, Miles Brown, Deon Cole, Laurence Fishburne, Jenifer Lewis, Peter Mackenzie, Marsai Martin, Jeff Meacham, Tracee Ellis Ross, Marcus Scribner, Yara Shahidi

“Curb Your Enthusiasm” — Ted Danson, Larry David, Susie Essman, Jeff Garlin, Cheryl Hines, J. B. Smoove

“GLOW” — Britt Baron, Alison Brie, Kimmy Gatewood, Betty Gilpin, Rebekka Johnson, Chris Lowell, Sunita Mani, Marc Maron, Kate Nash, Sydelle Noel, Marianna Palka, Gayle Rankin, Bashir Salahuddin, Rich Sommer, Kia Stevens, Jackie Tohn, Ellen Wong, Britney Young

“Orange Is the New Black” — Uzo Aduba, Emily Althaus, Danielle Brooks, Rosal Colon, Jackie Cruz, Francesca Curran, Daniella De Jesus, Lea DeLaria, Nick Dillenburg, Asia Kate Dillon, Beth Dover, Kimiko Glenn, Annie Golden, Laura Gómez, Diane Guerrero, Evan Arthur Hall, Michael J. Harney, Brad William Henke, Mike Houston, Vicky Jeudy, Kelly Karbacz, Julie Lake, Selenis Leyva, Natasha Lyonne, Taryn Manning, Adrienne C. Moore, Miriam Morales, Kate Mulgrew, Emma Myles, John Palladino, Matt Peters, Jessica Pimentel, Dascha Polanco, Laura Prepon, Jolene Purdy, Elizabeth Rodriguez, Nick Sandow, Abigail Savage, Taylor Schilling, Constance Shulman, Dale Soules, Yael Stone, Emily Tarver, Michael Torpey, Lin Tucci

“Veep” — Dan Bakkedahl, Anna Chlumsky, Gary Cole, Margaret Colin, Kevin Dunn, Clea Duvall, Nelson Franklin, Tony Hale, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Sam Richardson, Paul Scheer, Reid Scott, Timothy Simons, Sarah Sutherland, Matt Walsh

Winners for the 24th SAG Awards will be revealed Sunday, January 21 on TNT and TBS. See what Gold Derby is predicting will win in all nine TV categories.

Be sure to make your SAG predictions so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before winners are announced on January 21. And join in the fierce debate over the 2018 SAG Awards taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our TV forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

SIGN UP for Gold Derby’s free newsletter with latest predictions

More News from GoldDerby