ET spoke with the actress about being nominated for her sensational portrayal of Anita in 'West Side Story.'
"It's a wild, wild morning, day, week, month! Already, 2022, a heck of a year!" DeBose excitedly told ET's Denny Directo following the nomination announcements, before touching on how it feels to be recognized by her peers. "[It's] overwhelming and wonderful. I was looking at that list of nominees and so many of them I've been watching for years…I actually watch TNT and watch the SAG Awards. And this type of nomination by your union, your peers, it's the most remarkable and meaningful nomination I feel like you could receive."
Nominated alongside Caitriona Balfe (Belfast), Cate Blanchett (Nightmare Alley), Kirsten Dunst (The Power of the Dog) and Ruth Negga (Passing), DeBose expressed, "They're all wonderful... To be recognized by your fellow actors, that's real special."
"I was good getting to do the job! Like, I never in a million years thought Steven Spielberg was going to call me to offer me a gig," she recalled. "I was in a nail salon with foils. It was a thing. I didn't think that was going to happen, and I certainly didn't think I was ever going to play Anita in this way. And to have been able to do that, have the work and received it, I don't know, I really am overwhelmed by it. I got way more than I expected that I ever would, and that is a gift."
A SAG nomination isn't the only awards recognition she's recently received. The So You Think You Can Dance alum also won a Golden Globe for the West Side Story role -- another moment that she called "surreal."
"I was stretching in my sweaty gym clothes. I had just come back from the gym and they called and they were like, 'You just won a Globe,' and I was like, 'Oh!'" she shared. "It is surreal. It's wild. I will never not be 'Golden Globe-winner Ariana DeBose' now, you know? I thought I was really cool that I got to be 'Tony nominee Ariana DeBose,' and it's just wild because I don't really win things. I have never really besides a dance contest for ice cream, like, that is the only other thing I have ever really [won]."
Checking off win after win, bucket list moment after bucket list moment, DeBose is also gearing up to host the upcoming episode of Saturday Night Live.
"I just wanted to be on the show, so SNL was on my bucket list. I was walking down the 48th street like five years ago and I was like, 'That would be fun to be on Saturday Night Live one day,'" she recalled. "I didn’t think it was coming this quick though."
The Prom star is ready to take over Studio 8H, admitting that while she's "sensibly fearful," "the cast has been wonderful and it's been a really fun process."
"I still have no idea what I am doing and I probably won't know until we go live, so it will be a surprise to me and you," she quipped.
Saturday Night Live returns Jan. 15 with Debose as the host alongside newly-announced musical guest Bleachers, who are replacing previously-announced artist Roddy Ricch.
The 2022 SAG Awards will air Sunday, Feb. 27, and be broadcast live on TNT and TBS at 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET.