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At Least 58 Confirmed Dead from Brazil Dam Collapse; Palestinian Security Forces Face End of U.S. Support; U.S. Envoy: "Significant Progress" in Taliban Talks. Aired 12m-1a ET

Aired January 28, 2019 - 00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


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NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Nationwide protests, that's what opposition leader Juan Guaido is calling for as he fights for power in Venezuela.

CYRIL VANIER, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): The U.S. government shutdown just ended but President Trump says another one is still on the table.

ALLEN (voice-over): A night of big wins in Hollywood. We have highlights from the SAG Awards and what they might mean for the Oscars.

VANIER (voice-over): Thank you for joining us, we are live in the CNN Center I'm Cyril Vanier.

ALLEN (voice-over): I'm Natalie Allen and CNN NEWSROOM starts now.

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ALLEN: Venezuela's opposition leader is increasing his push to drive out sitting president Nicolas Maduro.

VANIER: Juan Guaido saying in an interview with "The Washington Post" that the opposition is in secret talks with military and government officials about ousting Mr. Maduro. He also called for new rounds of anti-government protests in the coming week.

ALLEN: Earlier in a wide-ranging interview with CNN Turk, President Maduro accused his rival of violating the law and the constitution and said the United States is behind a coup to remove him from power.

VANIER: Meanwhile, the U.S. continues to show support for Guaido. U.S. national security adviser John Bolton tweeted Sunday that any violence on American staff or the opposition would be met with a, quote, "significant response."

ALLEN: Venezuela's dueling leaders are vying for the support of the military. Both men made public appeals to combat forces, urging them to support their side. Stefano Pozzebon has more on the power struggle.

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STEFANO POZZEBON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, tension remains high here in Caracas on Sunday. Both Nicolas Maduro, the embattled Venezuelan president, and Juan Guaido, the president of the Venezuelan parliament, who swore himself in as acting president of Venezuela in order to call for fresh free and fair elections, they both pitch it to the same audience, to the military, who increasingly looks like the sole arbiter of the power struggle that is happening here in Caracas.

And while Nicolas Maduro demanded loyalty from his troops, Juan Guaido promised amnesty and pardon for those troops who would defect effectively Nicolas Maduro's rule and switch sides to the opposition.

And Guaido also called for new street protests next week -- next Wednesday and the following Saturday, giving a sign that the pressure on the Maduro government to join the negotiating table is only going to increase -- for CNN, this is Stefano Pozzebon, Caracas.

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ALLEN: Joining me now is Brian Winter, he is the editor-in-chief of "Americas Quarterly."

We want to talk about the situation in Venezuela. Thanks for joining us, Brian.

BRIAN WINTER, "AMERICAS QUARTERLY": Happy to be here.

ALLEN: All right, let's talk about recent developments. Both leaders in Venezuela appealed Sunday to the military, which is seen as the only institution that could press for elections, which could force, of course, Maduro out.

Do you think elections will happen?

WINTER: I don't know that they're going to happen anytime soon because the truth is there was all this momentum on Thursday when -- you know, so many governments around the world mostly in Europe, but also United States declared support for Juan Guaido and called him the new interim president of Venezuela.

The truth is that with every passing day that Maduro stays where he is, the chances of some sort of resolution that results in Maduro's departure, the chances of that decrease.

They're both right to be talking to the army. They are likely to be the ones who ultimately make the decision on this. But, everything right now indicates that at least, the generals are still with Maduro.

ALLEN: And you don't see any cracks there?

WINTER: I mean, there are probably cracks. But I noticed that Guaido said to the rank-and-file and his address on Sunday, he said -- you know, now is not the time to be scared.

If I was in the Venezuelan military and I was contemplating some sort of move against Maduro, I would be terrified. And that's just the truth because Maduro's government has shown itself willing to commit any barbarity in order to stay in power.

Ranging from starving his own people, to completely losing control of an economy that will have 10 million percent inflation this year to torturing and imprisoning family members -- of members of the armed forces, who they believe are a risk to them staying in power.

So, you know what we hear is that there are people within the Venezuelan armed forces who are horrified by the situation in Venezuela, who are sympathetic to Guaido, who are angry at Maduro. But who's going to be the first one among them --

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WINTER: -- to move, that's the question right now.

ALLEN: Right. So, you're indicating that the momentum for Guaido may be waning. Although, we hear that the two sides are talking.

Is that a ploy by Maduro or could there be something constructive from this?

WINTER: Dialogue, any offer of dialogue from Maduro is just a cynical ploy. I mean, that's a guy who has been saying for five years or longer that he will negotiate and he talks and he goes to the table and the Vatican's been involved and Spanish officials have been involved.

And it never leads anywhere because he has no intent of going anywhere.

One of the reasons Maduro doesn't want to go anywhere is because he knows that if he leaves power, he'll most likely end up either dead or in a jail cell in the United States because Venezuela is a country that not only exports oil, it exports tons of cocaine. It's a narco state.

And so, you know, again what this points to in this -- in this current standoff is that Maduro and his -- you know, his gang of people around him have every incentive to try to hold onto power and none or very little, at least, to give it up peacefully.

ALLEN: Right. Speaking of the United States, they have kept the heat on, they have asked other countries to join in with them.

Does that matter at this point is the Trump administration and doing all that they can do?

WINTER: Well, I think it matters some and I think that -- you know, I mean look, the events of the last week or so. I didn't see them coming, most people who follow Venezuela did not see them coming. The emergence of this fresh face, the resolute nature of the Trump

administration. As well as -- you know, other governments like Canada, which is -- you know, hardly part of a -- you know, global right-wing conspiracy against Maduro.

And we'll see. I mean, they're still levers that they can try. I mean, there's talk in Washington about trying to take the -- essentially, the revenues that come from oil. So, Venezuelan oil sold to the United States and trying to get some of those revenues to Guaido instead of to Maduro.

That's the sort of thing that could -- you know, could move this along and be another chink in Maduro's armor. But we'll see. I mean, again, as long as Maduro has control of the armed forces, he is likely to stay in power.

ALLEN: And you got a feel for the Venezuelan people, they are still in the streets of fighting for their dignity and their rights. We appreciate it, Brian Winter, joining us. We appreciate your insights, Brian. Thank you.

WINTER: Thank you.

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VANIER: Authorities are vowing to hunt down the perpetrators of Sunday's bomb attack in the Philippines.

ALLEN: The two blasts killed at least 20 people at a cathedral. ISIS has claimed responsibility through its media wing but did not provide evidence. Our Matt Rivers is on this story.

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MATT RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: There are dozens of casualties here in the Philippines after a pair of explosions in the part of the southern Philippines, in a region called Mindanao, in a town called Jolo.

According to authorities, the first explosion took place inside a cathedral in that town where people were attending Sunday services.

The second explosion took place shortly thereafter. It occurred as soldiers who were nearby were rushing over towards the church to assist victims of the first explosion. That's when the second explosion occurred and that's what the soldiers became victims themselves.

Unfortunately, this is a region of the Philippines that is no stranger to this kind of violence. For decades, there has been violence between Christians and Muslims in the area, between the government and separatists forces in the area.

In fact, it was just back in 2017 that Islamic militants laid siege to a city called Marawi and it took about five months, 150 days, for Philippine's military forces to actually get those militants out of the city and we know that attacks have continued since then.

Additionally, another piece of relevant information here is that a referendum vote took place last Monday. That vote was relatively controversial.

It was a vote essentially on a plan that was created by the government and separatist groups in the region to create a newly self- administered region in this part of the Philippines, the hope there being that autonomy could help make that region more peaceful and more safe for the people that live there.

That referendum did ultimately end up passing, but of course not everyone voted for it, including the town of Jolo where this latest attack occurred. The government is not saying that this attack had anything to do with that vote. They are not saying it had anything to do with previous violence in this region, only saying that this investigation is ongoing.

And of course, their priority remains to dozens of casualties that were the result of a pair of explosions on Sunday in the southern Philippines -- Matt Rivers, CNN, Clark, the Philippines.

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ALLEN: Pope Francis says the Philippine church bombings have plunged --

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ALLEN: -- the Christian community into mourning. He says he's praying for the victims of the terror attack. He spoke before wrapping up his five-day visit to Panama for World Youth Day. He also for a just and peaceful solution to the crisis in Venezuela.

VANIER: U.N. human rights experts are set to arrive in Turkey Monday to investigate the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. He was killed inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in October. U.S. intelligence concluded the Saudi crown prince directed this murder but Saudi officials deny that.

ALLEN: The U.S. government shutdown has ended but the White House says another one could be coming. The latest on the border security debate ahead here.

VANIER: And it's that time of year again, awards season in Hollywood, actors honoring actors. We'll tell you all about the big winners, just a little later.

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ALLEN: Welcome back.

We have a new development in the case against Roger Stone, the long- time Trump political adviser arrested on Friday.

VANIER: He was indicted on charges that include lying to Congress about his efforts to get dirt on Hillary Clinton from --

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VANIER: -- Russian-linked WikiLeaks. Stone repeatedly pledged his loyalty to Trump; he promised that he would not flip on the president. But when asked if he would cooperate with the special counsel, Stone kept it ambiguous.

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ROGER STONE, LONGTIME TRUMP ASSOCIATE: I've been under investigation for two years. I've destroyed nothing.

But if I were going to destroy evidence, wouldn't I have done it a long time ago?

They could simply have called my lawyers and I would have turned myself in.

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STONE: It's an offensive show of force to try to depict me as public enemy number one, the OG. It's an attempt to poison the jury pool.

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, ABC NEWS HOST: Any chance you'll cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller, if he asks?

STONE: You know, that's a question I would have to -- I'd have to determine after my attorneys have some discussion. If there's wrongdoing by other people in the campaign that I'd know about, which I know of none -- but if there is, I would certainly testify honestly.

I would testify honestly about any other matter including communications with the president. It's true we spoke on the phone. They are political in nature, they are benign. There is certainly no conspiracy with Russia.

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ALLEN: President Trump meantime is trying to distance himself, tweeting that, quote, "Roger Stone didn't even work for me anywhere near the election."

VANIER: Though the government shutdown just ended, the U.S. president says another one is an option.

ALLEN: In an interview with "The Wall Street Journal," President Trump says he is skeptical that congressional negotiators can agree on funding a border wall before the next government funding deadline, February 15th. President Trump said he doubted he would accept less than $5.7 billion for it and would use emergency powers to fund the wall if necessary. He has said he might do that before. VANIER: That leaves the president's position unchanged from what triggered the just-ended shutdown. Boris Sanchez report, it's unclear how the outcome of another standoff would be different.

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BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: The White House is effectively threatening a second government shutdown if President Trump and his team do not get what they want from Democrats during the ongoing negotiations over border security.

Keep in mind the continuing resolution that was passed on Friday goes through 21 days so we may be facing a second government shutdown in three weeks if the president does not get border wall funding.

His acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, made the case on one of the Sunday morning talk shows. Listen to this.

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MICK MULVANEY, ACTING CHIEF OF STAFF, WHITE HOUSE: We've been working on this for months. We have been hoping for months to do it through legislation with Democrats because that's the right way for the government to function. But at the end of the day, the president's commitment is to defend the nation and he'll do it either with or without Congress.

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SANCHEZ: Now it's unclear exactly how the White House believes it'll be different a second time around. They don't really have the numbers when it comes to Congress. Remember that only one Democrat in the Senate voted for the White House's plan to reopen the federal government. That was Joe Manchin of West Virginia.

We don't know exactly where the president thinks he's going to get support. And if he has to bypass Congress, it'll likely be through declaring a national emergency on the issue of immigration. That's an option that's been on the table for some time. The president has not moved in that direction in part because there's no guarantee that it would actually work.

Democrats have already vowed to challenge it so it would wind up in the court system and ultimately not give the president that immediate funding that he wants for his long-promised border wall -- Boris Sanchez, CNN at the White House.

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VANIER: The shutdown cost the U.S. economy more than the money Trump wanted for the border wall. According to Standard and Poor's, the economy lost at least $6 billion because of loss productivity and lost economic activity to outside businesses.

ALLEN: Meanwhile, Americans are not happy with the way the government is running. A new NBC News/"Wall Street Journal" poll shows 63 percent say the company is on the wrong track; just 28 percent think they are going in the right direction. The negative numbers are up 7 points from last month.

For more on the political fallout, let's go Jessica Levinson in Los Angeles. She's a professor of law and governance at Loyola University Law School.

Good to see you, Jessica, thanks for joining us.

JESSICA LEVINSON, LOYOLA UNIVERSITY LAW SCHOOL: Thanks.

ALLEN: Let's talk about what we just heard there, the cost of the shutdown, that means it cost more to American taxpayers than the wall would have cost, the wall the president said Mexico would pay for.

What's your assessment of what the country just went through with this shutdown and its impact, if any?

LEVINSON: My assessment is that the country just went through something really quite terrible. If you think of the 800,000 people who are dependent on the federal government or their jobs and for some sort of consistency in a paycheck and for whom frankly we have now learned to the extent we didn't already know, cannot afford to miss a paycheck, I think it was terribly hurtful.

And let's also not forget all the people who are, for instance --

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LEVINSON: -- federal contractors, who work and serve federal workers, who drive them around, who give them food, who are kind of downstream in the economy, these people are people who are never going to recoup their revenue.

I think -- so that's kind of the real-world like at the kitchen table impact for many, many people and then I think politically this has just been you know however you want to spin it and I know that's all we do in America in 2019, but Nancy Pelosi won and President Trump lost. He said I will not reopen the government without funding for a wall. There is $0.00 in funding for a wall right now.

ALLEN: Right. So I want to ask you about that and now we have this acting chief of staff, we've heard it from the President who's saying I may shut it down again because we don't have that much time to negotiate the border wall.

He already as you just mentioned caved the first time. What in the world would have him do that again, shut it down, I mean, because the pressure would be on that he couldn't cave a second time right?

LEVINSON: Well, I think that two things essentially. I think, one is his personal desire and head election to not lose even though we frankly have seen him lose in this case but he make the battle that -- or he could make the argument that I lost the battle but I'm going to win the war and therefore we are shutting down the government again, really to see how far Nancy Pelosi will go and to see if she'll blink. I think the other reason is this is popular with his base and that is a narrow base that is kind of a ceiling of 36 percent of the American public.

But if you look at Donald Trump and I think what is important to him, the policies that has proposed, he really is largely praying to that base. So I think it's in some ways ego. I think he ran on being a master dealmaker and there's no deal.

And I think it's in some ways the politics of him really deciding that that's his constituency, it's the 36 percent who will not leave him.

ALLEN: Now, what the question is to -- in this three-week period, is the onus on the Democrats to give him a little more vis-a-vis immigration?

LEVINSON: So, I think that there's some responsibility on behalf of Democrats to talk about immigration reform. I do not think there's a responsibility on behalf of Democrats to talk about funding for this wall. I think that what both parties are responsible for doing is to promoting policy that actually works for the American public.

There are plenty of problems when it comes to immigration, when it comes to drug trafficking, when it comes to both illegal immigration, asylum seekers, but building a wall is not going to solve the problems. It is frankly a solution in search of a problem. And we know there are better ways to prevent drug trafficking for instance to close and protect ports of entry.

We know talking to the experts this is not actually what they want. So the burden is on both parties to get something real done.

ALLEN: I want to ask you that last question here. We have seen him pull away from his, it will be a concrete wall; he just even referenced a smart wall in the Rose Garden when he announced the government was reopening.

At this point does he really want that wall or is he trying to save face?

LEVINSON: Well, I think the short answer is I think he's trying to save face. The longer answer is we have heard this now for a number of weeks, where he has he's tried to change language. And he said basically, when I say wall, I don't actually mean wall. What I mean is some sort of barrier.

We saw about a month ago, his surrogates trying this out for size, to see if it would work. I think what he's going to be desperately searching for is some way to say, we have money for a...

And a fill-in-the-blank type of barrier. So to the extent we can find some funding for a project that would actually work and we can call it a barrier or a reinforced border, then I think President Trump can say I got something done and Democrats can feel they didn't cave on the border wall, they didn't cave on bad policy but they also worked to keep the government open. ALLEN: It will be an interesting three weeks. We thank you for your insights, Jessica Levinson, thank you.

LEVINSON: Thank you.

VANIER: U.S. Senator Kamala Harris officially launched her campaign for the Democratic nomination in the 2020 presidential election. She held a rally in her hometown of Oakland, California, where she was once a prosecutor.

She avoided mentioning President Trump by name but there was no doubt who she was targeting for criticism when she talked about America's standing in the world and its deep internal divisions.

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SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D), CALIFORNIA: Under this administration, America's position in the world has never been weaker.

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HARRIS: When democratic values are under attack around the globe, when authoritarianism is on the march, when nuclear proliferation is on the rise, when we have foreign powers infecting the White House like malware.

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VANIER: Harris is among four Democrats running with three others exploring a run.

ALLEN: Palestinian security forces could be facing an end to U.S. support. Officials in the West Bank are worried but so are some in Israel. We have an exclusive report from the region coming up.

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VANIER: Welcome back to the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Cyril Vanier.

ALLEN: I'm Natalie Allen. Here are our headlines this hour.

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NATALIE ALLEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Several defense authorities in Brazil say the death toll from Friday's dam collapse, has jumped to 58. They warned that number will likely rise. Rescue workers are searching for hundreds of people still missing. Heavy rain complicated those efforts overnight, with each passing hour, the chance of finding survivors, shrinks. VANIER: Over the course of the last 12 months, the White House has announced a series of funding cuts to Palestinians. The administration says it wants to pressure the Palestinian authority to return to peace talks with Israel.

ALLEN: All that's left of U.S. funding is the money that goes to support the Palestinian security forces. And now, a new U.S. anti- terror law is putting even those funds, in jeopardy. CNN's Ian Lee has his story from the West Bank.

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IAN LEE, CNN FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT: Palestinian security forces locked and loaded, for a raid in the West Bank City of Nablus. Intelligence just informed the police that a known drug dealer, heavily armed, is on the move. This is the man they've wanted for quite some time.

We arrived at an empty apartment building. The police formed a perimeter, to stack up and move in. If the tactics appear straight out of an American playbook, that's because they are.

The Americans play an important role in security issues, facilities and improving our skills, the major general tells me. We can't play down their importance.

At this training based in Jericho, soldiers and police train for months, honing their skills from basic drills to shooting with an AK- 47.

Here, elite units practice rescuing soldiers injured during an ambush and engaging the terrorists. What you're seeing is part of the more than $60 million a year, the U.S. taxpayers have contributed toward Palestinian security.

Another winner of this partnership, Israel, it's no secret the Palestinian security forces carry a large burden for the Israeli army.

BRIG. GEN. EFRIAM SNEH (RET.), ISRAEL DEFENSE FORCES: If the Palestinian authority will be obliged to act less, our soldiers will have to act more. It will -- it will put on them a bigger burden of counterterrorist activity.

DAN SHAPIRO, FORMER U.S. AMBASSADOR TO ISRAEL: The security cooperation between the Israeli security forces and the Palestinian authority -- security forces has been exceptional, highly professional, highly effective, highly appreciated by both sides. If we lose that, it could really be a blow to the stability -- relative stability that has prevailed in the West Bank for the last number of years.

LEE: Some Palestinians say that cooperation aids Israel's occupation. Palestinian officials say they're building the foundation of a future Palestinian state.

Palestinian security services are part of the regional security forces, the governor tells me. We are playing a significant role in fighting drugs, extremism and money laundering.

One previous raid in Nablus shows what security forces contend with on a daily basis.

This is what they recovered, three-kilograms of various drugs. Over here, we have an Israeli army automatic rifle, as well as a pistol, 4 grenades and finally, 900 rounds of ammunition.

This kind of firepower is common and would likely fill the vacuum in the absence of Palestinian security.

Back on the raid, police navigate the stairwell. It's tense. But the forces move quickly to arrest the suspect and haul him away, the whole raid taking less than four minutes. That's good bang for the buck. Both Israeli and Palestinian officials will tell you.

Ian Lee, CNN, in the West Bank.

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VAUSE: And the U.S. State Department tells CNN it is continuing to work through the potential impact of the new anti-terror law.

ALLEN: In a statement, it says, in consultation with partners, we have taken steps to wind down certain projects and programs in the West Bank and Gaza. The statement did not go into further detail.

This weekend, saw signs of progress from both sides in U.S. talks with the Taliban. The U.S. envoy Zalmay Khalilzad tweeted Saturday. There's been significant headway on vital issues. A Taliban official echoed that statement, but said more talks are needed. A source tells CNN, the two sides are discussing a ceasefire.

[00:35:00] Here's how people were reacting in Kabul, on Sunday.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): It is very good news. And I hope that they agree on a peace deal. We hope for lasting peace in the country so that our people can live in a peaceful situation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Everyone is tired of war and conflicts in this country. And we support any peace agreement between Afghans, Americans and the Taliban, for the prosperity of our country.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VANIER: Also coming up on this show, Hollywood honors its own, as the winners of the Screen Actors Guild Awards are announced. Do they set the table for the Academy Awards? We will delve into that.

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CHADWICK BOSEMAN, ACTOR, BLACK PANTHER: We all know what it's like to be told that there is not a place for you to be featured. Yet, you are young, gifted and black. We knew not that we would be around during awards season, and that we would make a billion dollars, but we knew that we had something special.

VANIER: That's Chadwick Boseman there, speaking for the Black Panther cast, which took the Screen Actors Guild equivalent of Best Picture, at the SAG Awards, Sunday, in Los Angeles.

ALLEN: Along with the cast of Black Panther, Rami Malek and Glenn Close were also the big winners. What does it all mean as a predictor for the Academy Awards, the Oscars? What were the big surprises? Well, joining us is one of our favorite guests, and these pertinent and important questions, Sandro Monetti, Editor-in-Chief, Hollywood International, Filmmaker Magazine, Sandro, hello --

SANDRO MONETTI, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, HOLLYWOOD INTERNATIONAL FILMMAKER MAGAZINE: Wakanda forever!

ALLEN: Exactly.

VANIER: We want to talk about Black Panther. Let's start there.

MONETTI: In this award season of surprises, we've learned to expect the unexpected. And Black Panther has been in the conversation, but it's never won one of the big awards. Now, it has. And as the Oscars approach on February 24, could Black Panther actually take Best Picture? It is the first Marvel film nominated for that.

It has all the momentum now, with this win. And, you know, I was thinking, whatever wins, in a few years' time, the only 2018 movie anyone is going to remember is Black Panther. It's changed the industry in many ways. Could the Oscars be a coronation for this film? Well, the table has been set by the Sags.

ALLEN: Yes, I want to ask you, also, two repeat winners, already, this season, Rami Malek for Bohemian Rhapsody, Glenn Close for The Wife, are they locked in for an Oscar?

MONETTI: Nothing is locked in, in this crazy, unpredictable award season, but there is close to a favorite as you can get, Christian Bale for Vice and Rami Malek (INAUDIBLE) to get out from the Best Actor prices, and now, Rami Malek for Bohemian Rhapsody, has the edge.

And the same too with Glenn Close, over Olivia Coleman, who expect will probably win the BAFTA, for the favorites. Glenn Close never won the Oscar, beloved at the SAGs, and she wins.

[00:40:07] And let me tell you why they are likely to win the Oscars, it's because more than any other award show, the SAGs have a huge influence on the Academy Awards, they're voted for by actors, and actors make up, by far, the largest voting block at the Academy.

So, history shows us, that if you win a SAG, chances are, very likely, you're going to win an Oscar. So, for Ramu Malek and for Glenn Close, it's looking good.

VANIER: What about -- were there any snubs, any actors or movies that you thought were forgotten or unfairly treated?

MONETTI: Oh, you're telling me. A Star Is Born, four nominations, no wins.

ALLEN: Bradley Cooper -- Bradley Cooper is just sitting there. What a waste.

VANIER: Natalie's disappointed.

MONETTI: What a waste, what a miscarriage of justice. I was thinking that months ago, A Star Is Born would get 15 Oscar nominations, it would sweep the board, and it seems to have lost all their momentum. The favorite, that's got 10 Oscar nominations, that was shut out here, BlacKkKlansman, as well. Everyone's getting their turn.

No one could agree on what the Best Picture is (INAUDIBLE) what the Best Performances are, and I love it. As someone who covers Hollywood, it makes the awards race interesting for once. No one likes a predictable ceremony.

ALLEN: Absolutely, absolutely. What about Green Book? We saw Mahershala Ali, again, take the stage.

MONETTI: Oh, yes. He -- now he's won three SAG Awards now, in the course of his career. And yes, he seems probably the hottest favorite, I think, of all, in -- now, I think Green Book will probably win Best Picture at the Oscars. That's the buzz I'm hearing. But, who knows, really?

It wasn't even nominated for Best Ensemble at the SAGs. I'm talking of people not being nominated. Emily Blunt won Best Supporting Actress tonight for A Quiet Place. She won't be repeating it at the Oscars because she's not nominated. Like I said, no one's going to agree on Best Performances this year.

VANIER: Miscarriage of cinema justice. I love it. OK, maybe just give us your personal favorites.

MONETTI: Oh, well, I would say, you know, being a Brit, the favorite, you know, all that set up of royalty is great. But, I actually think it's been a fantastic year for movies. So, we talk a lot about how all the best scripts are in television now.

But, I think the fact that no one can agree on which is the best movie, there was a good quality of films this year. And, yes, just don't see all of them if you possibly can, because everything nominated is really, really good.

ALLEN: That's a good --

VANIER: OK. That's called not committing. That's called not committing. He's waiting for the Oscars. That's why. He doesn't want to get wrong before the Oscars.

ALLEN: Sandro Monetti --

MONETTI: Wakanda!

ALLEN: Oh, thank you so much. It's always good to see you. VANIER: Sandro, thank you, thank you.

ALLEN: See you at the Oscars. Thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Natalie Allen.

VANIER: I'm Cyril Vanier. "WORLD SPORT" is up next. And we're back in 15 minutes with more world news.

ALLEN: See you then.

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