DECRYPTION – Virtual because of the virus and shaken up by gloomy revelations, the ceremony could consecrate a new wave of talents and directors.
The 78th Golden Globes will be awarded on the night of Sunday to Monday during a virtual ceremony straddling Beverly Hills, California, and New York. A first for the institution which is preparing the awards season and paving the way for the Oscars. From the pandemic to the scandals, all is not however for the best under the sunlights. What to know before the ceremony.
The winners in their salons
Like the Emmy awards in September which rewarded the best television programs, the Golden Globes will have a hybrid format. No red carpet or champagne this Sunday. All the winners will be at a distance, at their American and European homes, but the two presenters of the evening Amy Poehler and Tina Fey will be on stage, surrounded by presenters such as Salma Hayek, Laura Dern or Angela Bassett.
Small peculiarity, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler will not be side by side. The first will animate in New York, the second in Los Angeles. The ceremony that distinguishes the best of movies and series of the vintage 2020, will begin at 8 p.m. New York on NBC. Or two o’clock in the morning at home on Canal +.
In the absence of stars to sit around the banquet tables, the Golden Globes, which are unlike the Oscars a gala where you eat and drink in normal times, will invite caregivers and essential workers, in particular volunteers working in food banks.
Under the sign of suspicion
The probity of the Golden Globes has been regularly questioned for years. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) which organizes it has 87 members who co-opt among themselves. Getting into the HFPA is not easy and an opaque process, you have to find two sponsors and admissions are tricky because this small group of journalists, often freelancers, based in California do not want to dilute their exorbitant influence. on the price season. Pampered by the studios, the lucky ones have privileged access to the stars and to certain press trips. This explains for many experts that the HFPA carries, each year, nominations which defy understanding and critical good sense.
Among the most gruesome 2021 nominations is Kate Hudson for Music, Sia’s controversial and hated autism film. The double nomination, on the serial side, ofEmily in Paris raised his eyebrows until we found out through a crisp investigation by the Los Angeles Times that thirty members of the HFPA had been invited on the set of the comedy in Paris and very well housed and fed. The newspaper revealed that the HFPA had no black members, that some very old were practically blind and deaf and that it paid some even though it was a non-profit structure. Within the group, the atmosphere would be deleterious: several journalists who wanted to join the association gave up after having faced slander and intimidation. One of them even filed an antitrust complaint against the HFPA.
More than ever an oracle of the Oscars
Pre-Covid, the Golden Globes were held after nominations and during the Oscar voting process. A victory and a nice speech at the Globes could attract welcome attention. With the pandemic shaking up the usual schedule, the Golden Globes will take place even before the Oscar nominations process begins. Sunday’s winners will seem essential: one can imagine that some of the 10,000 professionals of the seventh art who form the electorate of the Oscars are tempted to watch in priority the films awarded by the small seraglio of the HFPA.
In the number of nominations, it is Mank by David Fincher on the genesis of Citizen Kane who holds the rope with six quotes. But the very political Chicago Seven Aaron Sorkin, who recounts the White House’s biased and shackled trial of anti-Vietnam War activists, is favored by experts to win the coveted trophy for best drama. In ambush looms Nomadland Chloe Zhao’s hymn to the glory of modern hippies traveling the United States in their vans. Florian Zeller’s adaptation of his play The Father, with Anthony Hopkins as an old man sinking into dementia, and the vengeful feminist thriller Promising Young Woman should not be able to disrupt this face-to-face.
On the comedy side, because the Golden Globes separate and multiply the categories, anti-Trump satire Borat 2 with Sacha Baron Cohen as the fictional Kazakh journalist leaves with a head start but will have to beware of the musical Hamilton.
In the running for the trophy for best comic actor Sacha Baron Cohen is also selected in the category of best supporting role for Chicago Seven. His partner in Borat, revelation Maria Bakalova can hope to dominate Michelle Pfeiffer (French Exit) and Anya Taylor-Joy (Emma).
Time for female directors?
A post-MeToo revolution, the Golden Globes nominated a majority of women in the best achievement category. In eight decades, only Barbara Streisand, Jane Campion, Sofia Coppola, Ava DuVernay and Kathryn Bigelow had broken that glass ceiling. In 2021, there are three: Chloe Zhao (Nomadland), the two actresses and directors Regina King (One Night In Miami), star of Watchmen and Emerald Fennell (Promising Young Woman) who plays Camilla Parker Bowles in The Crown. They will face the directors, outnumbered, David Fincher and Aaron Sorkin.
This openness of the 87 international journalists based in California who make up the Golden Globes was astonishing. Last year, their reluctance had exasperated Greta Gerwig (Daughters of Doctor March) and Lulu Wang (The farewell). Paradoxically, notes the specialist magazine The Hollywood Reporter, it is therefore this category of the best realization which is also the one which advocates diversity with an African-American (King) and a filmmaker of Asian origin (Zhao).
A new generation of stars
The Golden Globes have a reputation (especially in the playoffs sections) for bringing out young talents. The HFPA cherishes this role of prescriber of trends and could be tempted to apply it this year in the cinema categories. With the pandemic, the studios have continued to shift their blockbusters, independent cinema is therefore very present and honors young actors (often discovered on the small screen). Rather than crowning the imperial and veteran Frances McDormand (great in Nomadland), the Golden Globes could finally dub the enraged, desperate and unpredictable Carey Mulligan in Promising Young Woman or crown Vanessa Kirby in the running for the title of best actress for her first leading role at 32 for Pieces Of A Woman, painful story of perinatal bereavement.
On the men’s side, this season has propelled Riz Ahmed, 38, into the limelight. The British of Pakistani origin is stunning as a metal musician losing his hearing in Sound Of Metal. But winning the trophy promises to be complicated in front of the Anthony Hopkins monument (The father), to the solid Gary Oldman (Mank) and the late Chadwick Boseman, glowing in Ma Rainey’s Blues. In the best actor section, French film lovers will have a thought for Tahar Rahim, imprisoned in Guantánamo in Designated guilty.
The series take their revenge
Usually the Golden Globes television charts, cursed to lengthen the evening, are quickly forgotten. But this year the pandemic has accelerated the germ mutations and reshuffled the cards. The cinemas remained closed for long months, the series became unifying: an object of universal desire, attracting even the most recalcitrant.
The Golden Globes have reserved a shower of nominations for the most-watched soap operas of the year. Two for Normal People or Apple’s football comedy, Ted Lasso . Three for The Great . A sign of a slide from glamor to the small screen, Anya Taylor Joy and Olivia Colman are nominated twice for their films Emma and The father that very few people have seen unlike their interpretation of Beth Harmon in The Lady’s Game and Elizabeth II in The Crown. It is for these performances on Netflix that they will be expected.
Carried by “the Diana effect”, the fourth season of The Crown crushes the competition with six citations, a feat at this point. In addition to the trophy for best drama, the chronicle of the reign of the Windsor imposes all its actors, sometimes in head-on rivalry with each other, from the most confirmed like Gillian Anderson and Helena Bonham-Carter to the greener Josh O’Connor or Emma Corrin. At 25 and for her first role, the interpreter of the Princess of Wales directly joins veterans Sarah Paulson (Ratched) and Laura Linney (Ozark). She is not the only young push to rise among the stars. Daisy Edgar-Jones (Normal People ) and Shira Haas (Unorthodox) is talking about Nicole Kidman (The Undoing) and Cate Blanchett (Mrs America). To tell the truth, the heavyweights of the dark rooms have met in the miniseries sections which offer, like a film, the promise of a curly narrative: Ethan Hawke (Good Lord Bird), Hugh Grant (The Undoing), Mark Ruffalo (I Know That Much Is True).