SAG Awards nominee profile: Lady Gaga (‘House of Gucci’) has already made history here

After dipping her toes into the film acting pool with appearances in “Machete Kills” and “Sin City: A Dame to Kill For,” pop superstar Lady Gaga took on her first starring part in 2018’s “A Star Is Born.” The following year, she became the first actress since Gabourey Sidibe (“Precious,” 2010) to be recognized by the Screen Actors Guild for her debut headlining role. Having landed in the current Best Actress lineup as the star of “House of Gucci,” she has now made history as the only woman to earn SAG nominations for both of her first two lead film performances.

Gaga’s competitors in this year’s Best Actress race are Jessica Chastain (“The Eyes of Tammy Faye”), Olivia Colman (“The Lost Daughter”), Jennifer Hudson (“Respect”), and Nicole Kidman (“Being the Ricardos”). First-time lead nominee Hudson is the group’s only past individual film acting champ, having prevailed as a supporting player for “Dreamgirls” (2007). Chastain shared in a Best Ensemble victory alongside the rest of the cast of “The Help” (2012) before earning her first lead notice for “Zero Dark Thirty” (2013). Colman was nominated for “The Favourite” against Gaga in 2019, and Kidman is now one of a dozen actresses with three or more bids in this category, having previously been recognized for “The Hours” (2003) and “Rabbit Hole” (2011).

In “House of Gucci,” Gaga portrays Patrizia Reggiani, whose notoriety stems from her having instigated the 1995 murder of her ex-husband, fashion magnate Maurizio Gucci. Throughout her performance, she imbues the eventual felon with a sense of tenacity and a clear hunger for power that often comes across as fearsome. Her portrayal is also enhanced by a continual exploration of the antiheroine’s psyche and frequent conveyance of her raw, ego-fueled feelings of love and fear.

Gaga is a double nominee this year, as she and her “House of Gucci” costars are collectively vying for the Best Ensemble prize against the casts of “Belfast,” “CODA,” “Don’t Look Up,” and “King Richard.” She and her fellow “A Star Is Born” actors contended for the same award three years ago but lost to the group from “Black Panther.” Her current castmate, Jared Leto, is up for Best Supporting Actor for the third time in his career after having won for “Dallas Buyers Club” (2014) and scoring a bid for “The Little Things” (2021). The only other “House of Gucci” ensemble nominee to have previously triumphed in a film category is Jack Huston, who shared in a cast victory for “American Hustle” (2014).

On her first individual outing, Gaga was bested by Glenn Close (“The Wife”), who, at 71, set a still-intact record as the category’s oldest victor. At 35, Gaga is now the sixth youngest woman to reap a second Best Actress bid, after Jennifer Lawrence (22 when nominated for “Silver Linings Playbook,” 2013), Saoirse Ronan (23, “Lady Bird,” 2018), Angelina Jolie (33, “Changeling,” 2009), Natalie Portman (35, “Jackie,” 2017), and Carey Mulligan (35, “Promising Young Woman,” 2021).

This article is a part of Gold Derby’s “SAG Awards nominee profile” series spotlighting the 2022 contenders in film and TV.

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