Netflix to Air Screen Actors Guild Awards for the First Time

Netflix will air live awards show for the first time, marking the streamer’s latest expansion into live programming and further cementing its influence in Hollywood.

Multi-Year Partnership

From 2024, Netflix will live-stream the Screen Actors Guild Awards globally as a part of a new, multi-year partnership. The awards show, previously aired on cable television on TNT since 1998, is owned by Warner Bros. Discovery, the parent company of CNN.

The SAG Awards

The SAG Awards are one of the most prestigious awards in Hollywood and honor the best performances in film and television. More than 120,000 members of the guild vote on the awards, and they are typically less extravagant and watched by fewer people than awards shows like the Oscars and Golden Globes.

Global Audience

As Netflix’s Head of Global TV, Bela Bajaria, announced that SAG Awards are widely loved by both the creative community and audiences, the partnership will allow more global fans to celebrate the talented actors.

Streaming Live

This year’s 29th Annual SAG Awards will stream live for the first time on Netflix’s YouTube channel on Sunday, February 26, at 8 pm ET. Nominees for the upcoming awards will be announced Wednesday.

Other Awards Show Streaming

It’s not the first awards show to jump from traditional TV to streaming. The Academy of Country Music Awards switched from CBS to Amazon’s Prime Video in 2022 and will stream live on the service again this year.

Competitive Industry

Netflix (NFLX) is slowly exploring airing live events on the platform: The company’s first live event will be a Chris Rock standup special airing on March 4 at 10 pm ET. Adding live events could help Netflix (NFLX) stand out against rivals as it fights to keep adding subscribers in an increasingly crowded market.

“As we’ve long said, we operate in a highly competitive industry, where people have many different entertainment choices — from linear TV to streaming, YouTube to TikTok, and gaming to social media,” Netflix wrote in its most recent earnings report. “The silver lining is that the opportunity is very large and growing.”

Live Sports

However, Netflix has resisted embracing certain live events, including sports, which are notoriously expensive to acquire.

“The economic models that are built around [live sports] are built around the economics of pay television, which are different than streaming,” said Ted Sarandos, Netflix co-CEO, last month at an investor conference. “We’re not anti-sports; we’re just pro-profits.”