Golden Globes


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Some of the winners from the 2023 Golden Globes Awards.

On Tuesday, January 10th, 2023, The 80th Golden Globes aired on television for the first time since 2020. The Golden Globes is an event that recognizes achievement in motion pictures and television, and it’s known for being “Hollywood’s liveliest night out” (Vogue). According to BBC, this award event was not televised for two years because the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) “was accused of ethical lapses and a lack of diversity in 2021”. According to Maite Knorr-Evans, “The HFPA is made up of journalists who cover the entertainment industry, and in 2021 it became public that no Black correspondents had been added to the organization’s membership since 2002”. Because of this issue, LA Times reported that “a contingent of powerful publicists boycotted the organization and studios including Netflix and WarnerMedia cut ties.” Netflix CEO, Ted Sarandos, shared with the HFPA that they would “pause any involvement until more meaningful changes were addressed.” He continued, “we know that you have many well-intentioned members who want real change— and that all of us have more work to do to create an equitable and inclusive industry” (Sarando).

After this, individual actors also released statements about the HFPA, including Mark Ruffalo, Ava Duvernay, Sterling K. Brown, and Tom Cruise, who returned three of his Golden Globe Trophies. In May 2021, NBC announced they would not air the 2022 Golden Globes. In a statement, they shared, “we continue to believe that the HFPA is committed to meaningful reform. However, change of this magnitude takes time and work, and we feel strongly that the HFPA needs time to do it right” (NBC). However, “the organization has worked to expand its membership, focusing on bringing in writers from marginalized backgrounds” (Evans). After the HFPA announced they would air the Golden Globes on NBC, in 2022, President Helen Hoehe affirmed “that the organization ‘remains committed to important changes and supporting programs that prioritize diversity, inclusion, and transparency’” (Evans).

The HFPA stayed true to their word, and during the voting process in September 2022, they announced their expansion of the voting to 200 members. Due to the increase of diversity in the membership, it is now “racially and ethnically diverse” (NBC). Statistics show that “the total Golden Globe Awards voting body is now 52% female, 51.5% racially and ethnically diverse, with 19.5% Latinx, 12% Asian, 10% Black, and 10% Middle Eastern” (Hollywood Foreign Press Association). At the start of the Golden Globes, Host Jerrod Carmicheal addressed the “series of controversies that led to the show’s removal from NBC last year, wrote Katey Rich. Even through all the controversy by the HFPA in the past, Carmichael stated, “this is an evening where we get to celebrate, and I think this industry deserves evenings like these ”.

Carmichael’s speech to address the issue at the beginning of the event was honest and necessary for viewers across the country to see. It was a joy to see the list of winners reflecting “broad diversity, and many speeches aimed to elevate diverse talent” (Reuters). After sharing why he decided to host the event, he ended his speech by stating how it’s an “honor of being in a room with the night’s nominees” (Rich). Angela Bassett, who won Golden Globe for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, was asked if “she hesitated to attend the awards, and said no: ‘I wasn’t about to stay home. The Hollywood Foreign Press has made strides to do what they know needs to be done” (Rich). She also stated, “Tonight is the beginning of that season where we celebrate our industry and our colleagues. We embrace them with great joy. It is our hope that people will always love coming and going to the movies. We’re the people in the room that provide that. To provide some applause, some love and embrace each other. We’re all in our own little galaxies, our worlds doing our own thing. It really is such a good time” (Variety). Bassett mentioned the positive sides of the Golden Globes, it’s a chance for actors and other people in the industry to get the “chance to mix and mingle” (Variety).

Others shared their thoughts on the situation, such as actress Michelle Yeoh: “I think it’s important because this is an international Golden Globe, right? It encompassess everybody and that’s something we constantly talk about, inclusivity. So, how can you not include them? What I think happened is that they needed to clean it all up. They needed to wake up to a brighter and more beautiful day”. According to Reuters, “Yeoh believes that it’s time to move ahead.”

Secondly, director, Baz Luhrmann shared similar thoughts by saying, “I think that Golden Globes has really walked the walk, not just talked the talk. They’ve made real, significant changes. We need them because this is about us all coming together and celebrating the movies”. Through all the controversy, the HFPA truly demonstrated the phrase: “actions speak louder than words.” The company understood the issues within their company and made changes where the change was needed.