The Actors’ Strike Has Overshadowed Exceptional Performances: A List of 13 Must-See Acts

by Sophia Chen
actors' strike and overlooked performances

The ripple effects of the actors’ strike, which has now crossed the 100-day mark, have been felt acutely across the entertainment sector. Films of varying scales have faced delays, sound stages have been closed, and industries related to cinema are also suffering significant setbacks.

This strike has further led to the overshadowing of remarkable performances that have largely gone unnoticed, owing to the absence of actors who would typically promote their work.

As the strike coincides with Hollywood’s award season, it further diminishes the visibility of some of this year’s most remarkable performances. While unemployment resulting from the strike may understandably mute concerns over Oscar campaigns, it remains that actors should be accorded their due recognition.

Temporary arrangements have enabled some exceptional performances of the fall, such as those by Sandra Hüller in “Anatomy of a Fall” and Cailee Spaeny in “Priscilla,” to gain some visibility on red carpets and receive standing ovations. Additionally, two of this year’s blockbuster films—“Barbie” and “Oppenheimer”—made their debut just as actors were commencing the strike.

There is hope that the ongoing negotiations between SAG-AFTRA and the studios will conclude soon, thereby providing a platform for actors in upcoming releases like Andrew Scott in “All of Us Strangers,” Aunjanue Ellis in “Origin,” Emma Stone in “Poor Things,” Jeffrey Wright in “American Fiction,” and Carey Mulligan in “Maestro,” among others.

To highlight some of the overlooked performances of September and October, here is a curated list of acts you should not miss.


In Martin Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon,” Lily Gladstone emerges as the calm amidst a storm of 1920s crime, offering a subtly commanding performance that is its own testament. (Currently showing in theaters)


In Alexander Payne’s “The Holdovers,” the ensemble cast delivers, with each actor bringing a unique and relatable human dimension to their roles. (Currently showing in theaters)


In Maggie Betts’ “The Burial,” Jamie Foxx offers a compelling performance as an effusive personal injury lawyer. (Available on Amazon Prime Video)


In “Nyad,” directed by Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin, Jodie Foster’s supporting role adds depth to an already intense sports drama. (Now streaming on Netflix)


In “Cassandro,” Gael García Bernal encapsulates the spirit of a groundbreaking Mexican American wrestler with his performance. (Available on Amazon Prime Video)


In John Carney’s “Flora and Son,” Eve Hewson captivates as a Dublin-based single mother whose life transforms through music. (Available on Apple TV+)


In George C. Wolfe’s “Rustin,” Colman Domingo offers a nuanced, layered portrayal of civil rights leader Bayard Rustin. (Limited theater release from Nov. 3, streaming on Netflix from Nov. 17)


In Garth Davis’ “Foe,” Aaron Pierre is captivating as a mysterious visitor in a dystopian world. (Currently showing in theaters)


In “Fair Play,” both actors deliver compelling performances as hedge fund analysts entangled in professional and personal dilemmas. (Available on Netflix)


In Emma Seligman’s “Bottoms,” Marshawn Lynch stands out in a small but impactful role. (In theaters and available for digital rental)

This article has been updated to correct the spelling of Gael García Bernal’s first name.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about actors’ strike and overlooked performances

What is the primary focus of this article?

The primary focus of this article is to discuss the effects of the ongoing actors’ strike on the film industry, particularly how it has led to some standout performances being overlooked. It aims to highlight 13 such performances across a range of films and platforms.

How has the actors’ strike impacted Hollywood?

The actors’ strike, now past 100 days, has had a widespread impact on the Hollywood film industry. Major and independent movies have been postponed, sound stages are closed, and related industries have also been severely affected.

Who are some actors that have given standout performances during the strike?

The article highlights performances by actors such as Sandra Hüller, Cailee Spaeny, Andrew Scott, Aunjanue Ellis, Emma Stone, Jeffrey Wright, and Carey Mulligan among others.

Are there any interim agreements that have allowed certain films and actors to gain recognition?

Yes, interim agreements have enabled some standout performers, like Sandra Hüller in “Anatomy of a Fall” and Cailee Spaeny in “Priscilla,” to make red carpet appearances and receive standing ovations.

Where can one watch these standout performances?

The performances can be found on a variety of platforms, including traditional theaters, and streaming services like Amazon Prime Video and Netflix.

Has the article been updated for corrections?

Yes, the article has been updated to correct the spelling of Gael García Bernal’s first name.

What is the time frame for the films and performances discussed in the article?

The article focuses on performances from films released in September and October, although it also anticipates some upcoming releases.

Are these performances likely to be contenders for awards?

While the article does not specifically address this, it does mention that the strike is affecting Hollywood’s awards season, suggesting that these standout performances might have been strong contenders under different circumstances.

More about actors’ strike and overlooked performances

  • Actors’ Strike: Current Status and Impacts
  • SAG-AFTRA Negotiations: What You Need to Know
  • Overview of Streaming Platforms for Movies
  • Hollywood Awards Season: A Brief Guide
  • Anatomy of a Fall: Movie Review and Where to Watch
  • Priscilla: Movie Review and Where to Watch
  • Overview of Affected Adjacent Industries Due to Actors’ Strike
  • Past Oscar Campaigns and Their Impact on Careers

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JohnDoe October 28, 2023 - 8:42 am

Man, this strike is messin up everything. Oscars are gonna be weird this year, that’s for sure.

RealTalk October 28, 2023 - 9:48 am

This is more than a Hollywood problem, affects all the little guys in the industry too. But good on ya for highlighting the talent that’s being missed.

MovieBuff101 October 28, 2023 - 11:14 am

finally someone’s talking about the actors who are getting overlooked! some of these performances are next level.

TimTheEnthusiast October 28, 2023 - 12:07 pm

Lily Gladstone was amazing in Killers of the Flower Moon. If she doesn’t get an award, it’ll be a travesty.

EllaR October 28, 2023 - 12:22 pm

Didn’t even know about half these films. Thanks for pointing ’em out. Gonna have a movie night this weekend.

MichelleP October 28, 2023 - 1:04 pm

Wonder how long the negotiations will drag on. people’s careers are on the line here.

FinanceGuy October 28, 2023 - 4:01 pm

Interesting to see how the strike is not just affecting Hollywood but other industries as well. it’s a whole ecosystem out there.

Cinephilia October 28, 2023 - 11:18 pm

Wow, Marshawn Lynch acting? That’s gotta be something. Will check out “Bottoms” for sure.

SarahQ October 29, 2023 - 5:43 am

Interim agreements sound like a band-aid solution to me. whats gonna happen when the awards season is in full swing?


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