Golden Globes: Hollywood nonetheless ‘on the fence’ about 2023 awards

Earlier than daybreak Monday, the Hollywood International Press Assn. introduced its nominations for the primary televised Golden Globe Awards in two years, since a 2021 Instances investigation uncovered an absence of range within the group’s membership and raised considerations about its ethics and monetary practices.

Hollywood’s response? A collective out-of-office message.

In years previous, studios and publicists greeted the nominations with a flurry of press releases, lining up interviews with nominees to share their breathlessly excited reactions. However within the wake of two years of scandal and tumult surrounding the Globes, the response was decidedly muted, because the trade reconsiders its relationship with what had lengthy been certainly one of Hollywood’s most coveted, if typically mocked, awards.

Of almost 60 nominees within the movie and TV appearing classes The Instances reached out to on Monday, together with Adam Driver (“White Noise”), Cate Blanchett (“Tár”) and Viola Davis (“Woman King”), just one was obtainable for remark, with a handful of others sharing ready statements of gratitude.

“Thank you so much to the Golden Globes — this is a great honor,” Hugh Jackman, a nominee for the drama “The Son,” mentioned in a 14-second video posted to Twitter, holding his hand to his chest.

“How wonderful that a tiny, independent movie shot during the pandemic is being recognized in this way,” Emma Thompson, who was nominated for her flip within the movie “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande,” mentioned in a press release. “We are all so grateful.”

Most didn’t reply in any respect.

After being pulled from the airwaves by NBC final yr, the Globes — which have lengthy marked the kickoff to Oscar season — are set to return to the community on Jan. 10 for his or her eightieth installment.

With Hollywood’s lingering misgivings concerning the HFPA regardless of its efforts at reform, it’s unclear what number of stars will select to attend the present, which has been bumped from its conventional Sunday night time time slot to Tuesday to make room for NBC’s “Sunday Night Football.” (The community made an analogous transfer with September’s Emmy Awards, which aired on a Monday.)

“It’s definitely a wait-and-see scenario right now with my clients,” mentioned one private publicist who represents a number of nominees however requested to not be named as a result of sensitivity of the topic. “The HFPA has put people in a lot of uncomfortable situations over the years, and from what I’m hearing, most aren’t in any hurry to forgive and forget.”

The nominations contained the HFPA’s traditional mixture of anticipated selections — together with finest image nods for blockbuster fare like “Top Gun: Maverick” and “Avatar: The Way of Water” in addition to indie standouts resembling “Everything Everywhere All at Once” and “Tár” — and a handful of snubs and head-scratchers, together with the omission of “Till” star Danielle Deadwyler, who is taken into account a powerful contender for a lead actress Oscar.

The darkly comedian “Banshees of Inisherin” led the movie pack with eight nominations, together with finest image (musical or comedy) together with nods for author and director Martin McDonagh and stars Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, Kerry Condon and Barry Keoghan. On the TV aspect, the ABC sitcom “Abbott Elementary” topped the sphere with 5 whole nods, together with for comedy sequence.

Confronted with a crippling boycott led by a coalition of greater than 100 main publicity companies that choked off the HFPA’s lifeblood of star energy, the group has sought to remake itself in and out to get again into Hollywood’s good graces.

The 96-member group added six Black journalists final yr — it beforehand had none — and introduced in 103 nonmember worldwide voters in an extra bid to increase and diversify its lengthy closed-off ranks. (The group, which incorporates members from 62 nations, now says it’s 52% feminine and 51.5% racially and ethnically numerous.) The HFPA has additionally banned items, instituted a hotline for reporting misconduct and quietly ejected a handful of members who had been accused of violating its requirements.

Below interim Chief Government Todd Boehly, the group has moved to remodel itself from a nonprofit group right into a for-profit firm with a separate philanthropic arm, although the group remains to be awaiting governmental approval for the brand new construction.

In current weeks, the HFPA has held quite a lot of conferences with studios and publicists, hoping to thaw relations. Many within the trade wish to see the Globes make a comeback, viewing the awards as a crucial advertising and marketing software on the highway to the Oscars — extra so than ever this yr, as quite a lot of critically acclaimed awards hopefuls, resembling “Tár” and “The Fabelmans,” have struggled to attach with wider audiences.

“There was a lot wrong… and it needed to be addressed,” mentioned one supply aware of the conferences between publicists and the HFPA.“This was an opportunity… to be able to understand what those things are and what changes, reforms and commitments are being made. Some people will be on the fence until they see this process.”

The supply, who requested anonymity so as to talk about ongoing conversations, added that public acknowledgment of Monday’s nominations, although muted in comparison with years previous, was usually extra optimistic than final yr’s almost silent response.

A tearful Niecy Nash, nominated for her supporting position in “Dahmer — Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story,” pointed to her nod’s significance as each a private and representational milestone. “When I saw the [headline] that said, ‘Niecy Nash could be the first Black woman to win in this category,’ my heart skipped a beat,” Nash advised The Instances. “In almost 2023, to still be the first Black person to do anything almost seems crazy.”

Primarily identified for her comedic work, Nash added that her nomination for “Dahmer” affirmed her perception that she may make individuals cry in addition to snort: “I just needed allies in the business to see me like I saw myself.”

On Monday, the official Twitter accounts of such movies as “Avatar: The Way of Water,” “The Fabelmans,” “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” and others additionally touted their nods on social media, a longtime characteristic of digital and print publicity for fall and winter releases.

Nonetheless, many in Hollywood stay reluctant to be related to the Globes model. Along with Jackman, “Yellowstone’s” Kevin Costner, “Blonde’s” Ana de Armas and pop star Rihanna, nominated for unique tune for “Lift Me Up” from “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” have been among the many few nominees who posted about their nods on social media.

One nominee who is definite to not attend subsequent yr’s Globes is Brendan Fraser, who earned a lead actor nod for his flip as a morbidly overweight trainer in “The Whale.” In 2018, Fraser alleged that former HFPA President Phil Berk groped him at a luncheon in 2003. Berk, who was expelled from the group final yr after calling Black Lives Matter a “racist hate movement,” has denied the allegation.

Fraser, who provided no response to his Globes nod on Monday, lately advised GQ that he wouldn’t participate within the ceremony. “I have more history with the Hollywood Foreign Press Association than I have respect for the Hollywood Foreign Press Association,” he advised the journal. “My mother didn’t raise a hypocrite. You can call me a lot of things, but not that.”

In an effort to revive what has lengthy been seen as Hollywood’s loosest, booziest and most unpredictable awards present, the HFPA and NBC introduced final week that comic Jerrod Carmichael would host the Globes banquet in January. Notably, Carmichael, who’s Black, is represented by the publicity agency ID PR, whose chief government, Kelly Bush Novak, helped lead the publicists’ boycott. (Carmichael additionally has historical past with NBC, having starred for 3 years on the sitcom “The Carmichael Show.”)

As different main awards exhibits just like the Oscars and Emmys have inexorably shed viewers lately, the Globes continued to carry regular, pulling in roughly 18 million viewers yearly earlier than the pandemic. Dampened by COVID-19 and controversy, nevertheless, the 2021 telecast attracted solely about 7 million viewers, and the scores prospects for subsequent yr’s present are unsure.

Hedging its bets, NBC — which was beforehand contracted to broadcast the Globes by 2026 — has mentioned it’s bringing the present again for less than a one-year trial. (The ceremony will even be obtainable by way of streaming on NBCUniversal’s Peacock platform.) Ought to it wrestle to ship a sufficiently sturdy viewers, the Globes’ future on NBC, or another broadcast community, may very well be in jeopardy as soon as once more.

After shunning the HFPA for almost two years, many in Hollywood are prepared to offer the group, which has managed to outlive quite a few scandals during the last eight many years, another likelihood.

“They’ve shown and demonstrated that they are serious about reforms,” mentioned Novak. “They’ve made seismic changes… and as painful as it has been getting here, they’ve acknowledged that it is just the beginning.”

Instances employees author Stacy Perman and columnist Glenn Whipp contributed to this report.