After a series of scandals, the Golden Globes attempt a comeback in Hollywood

The Golden Globes, deprived of air last year and shunned by the industry because of accusations of racism, sexism and corruption, are trying their comeback.

Long perceived as Hollywood’s favorite evening but now mired in scandals, the Golden Globes will try to restore their image on Tuesday, during a televised ceremony with red carpet, where blockbusters compete (Top Gun, Avatar) and more intimate films (The Fabelmans).

The presentation of these awards in Beverly Hills has traditionally been very well attended, as it kicks off the awards season in the United States. But last year, the Golden Globes were shut down and shunned by the industry, due to accusations of racism, sexism and corruption aimed at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), which forms their jury.

After a series of reforms to renovate the HFPA – which had no black members in 2021 – the American channel NBC agreed to broadcast the 80th Golden Globes ceremony this year.

Many big names are invited, including director Steven Spielberg, whose semi-autobiographical The Fabelmans share favorite for the award for best dramatic film, and actor Eddie Murphy who must be singled out for his entire career.

Inevitably “different”

African-American gay comedian Jerrod Carmichael will host the ceremony and director Quentin Tarantino is among the presenters of the awards. But the return to favor is far from guaranteed: the contract with NBC is only valid for this year and many nominees have not yet confirmed their presence.

The Golden Globes will inevitably be “different”, far from the glitter and champagne that flowed freely before the pandemic and the scandals, according to columnist Pete Hammond, of the specialized site Deadline.

“They’ll be more low-key. There’s no after-party to go to. There’s none of that. Studios don’t spend a lot of money on all that,” he explains. at AFP.

Those who walk the red carpet will have to justify their presence, facing journalists asking for their opinion on the reforms of the HFPA. “It won’t be exclusively ‘What are you wearing?'” he remarks.

Mark Absent

The ceremony must already deal with two absent marks. Brendan Fraser, nominated for his role as an obese and reclusive professor in his The Whale, accuses a former HFPA president of sexually assaulting him and will boycott the event. Producer of Top Gun: MaverickTom Cruise should also be absent, after returning his three Golden Globes to protest against the scandals.

His feature film will try, with the other huge box office success of 2022 Avatar: The Way of the Waterto prevent The Fabelmans to win the prize for best dramatic film.

Tarwhich takes place in the universe of classical music, and the biopic Elvis, on the king of rock’n’roll could also come as a surprise. Their respective stars – Cate Blanchett as the ruthless conductor, and Austin Butler as the remarkable Elvis Presley – are among the favorites for the acting awards.

As for comedies, Irish tragicomedy The Banshees of Inisherinwhich depicts the abrupt end of a friendship on a small Irish island in the 1920s, will compete in eight categories, a first for twenty years.

The film confronts in particular the surreal and mind-blowing Everything Everywhere All At Oncewhich could earn performance awards for Michelle Yeoh, Jamie Lee Curtis and Ke Huy Quan.

Diminished influence

Faced with controversy, the HFPA notably renewed the Golden Globes jury, including 103 new entrants – who are not full members of the association – including many women and people from ethnic minorities.

But it is above all the influence of these awards that is at stake after the recent controversies. In the past, a success at the Golden Globes was a valuable marketing tool, capable of launching a winning campaign towards the supreme reward of the Oscars.

In Hollywood, some members of the industry confide in private wishing a return to grace of these awards, which have been “an important cog in the awards season” for 80 years, points out Pete Hammond.

The movie posters also highlight the Golden Globe nominations again, unlike last year. But for the columnist, their power to influence the Oscars seems to be permanently diminished. “When every article about the Globes talks about scandal (…) it does not make them as credible, I think, for the voters of the Oscars”, he concludes.