Los Angeles (AFP) – “Belfast” and “West Side Story” are among the favorites for a significantly reduced 79th Golden Globes on Sunday, where the winners will be announced via Twitter after a non-televised ceremony boycotted by Hollywood.
The Globes – in the past billed as Tinseltown’s biggest party and the key first stop on the film awards circuit – have this year been stripped of their usual A-List glamor, as a row swirls over the ethical practices of organizers.
NBC has dropped its television broadcast and instead, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association – whose members vote on the Globes – will announce the winners on social media starting at 6:00 p.m. (02:00 GMT Monday).
“This year’s Golden Globes will be unlike any other Golden Globes we’ve ever seen before,” said Marc Malkin, Culture and Events Editor at Variety.
“And really, we’re not going to see much.”
“Belfast,” Kenneth Branagh’s poignant black-and-white account of the outbreak of sectarian violence in his hometown in the late 1960s, topped film nominations with seven, alongside “The Power of the Dog ”by Jane Campion.
Campion’s grim western starring Benedict Cumberbatch, which tackles toxic masculinity in 1920s Montana, would be the second female-directed film to win Best Drama if it Fends off “Belfast,” after “Nomadland ” from last year.
In the comedy or musical categories, Steven Spielberg’s remake of “West Side Story” flopped at the box office but was adored by critics, and is expected to mark the Globe voters very well.
It competes with “Don’t Look Up,” a satire on climate change in which scientists played by Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence attempt to warn a distracted world – and the US President (Meryl Streep) – of their fate. imminent. .
On the television side of things, “Succession,” HBO’s drama about a media mogul’s warring family, leads with five nods.
But the award races, which are usually watched closely to give an immediate boost to box office counts and which Oscar hopes a Globes win can bring, have been largely overshadowed by the long row over breaches. ethics at the HFPA.
The group of around 100 entertainment writers with ties to foreign publications have been accused of a litany of failures ranging from corruption to racism.
An article in the Los Angeles Times revealed that the HFPA does not have black members, opening the floodgates to critics from all over Hollywood, including prominent stars. Last year, Tom Cruise returned his statuettes in protest.
Organizers officially cited the resurgence of the pandemic as the reason for Sunday’s closed-door event, but Variety’s Malkin said the HFPA tried and failed to convince celebrities to attend.
Since the scandal erupted, the HFPA has rushed through reforms, admitting its highest annual membership, including several black members and other members of minorities.
He banned members from accepting lavish gifts and hotel stays from studios wooing their votes.
It remains to be seen whether these reforms will be enough to attract Hollywood stars and broadcasters in the years to come.
But this year hardly any actor or studio has publicly acknowledged their Globe nominations – and many Sunday winners are generally expected to respond with a similar stony silence.
“If they are named the winners, no one will issue a statement saying how happy they are to be recognized by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association,” said Malkin.
“If you’re a studio that hopes to get Golden Globe recognition, but you get the Golden Globe and you don’t actually celebrate it, does that matter? “
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