January 6, 2019


More articles by »
Written by: Mitch Salem
Tags: , , , , , ,


We’ve arrived at that strangest phenomenon of awards season, the night when we collectively grant the 88 nonentities of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (none of them filmmakers, many of them not even critics, and some of them of dubious principle) meaningful sway over the Academy Awards.  That will be even more true this year, since there are no overwhelming favorites in the major categories, and since Oscar nomination voting begins tomorrow morning, with the Globe results fresh in voters’ mins.

The thing that can be said for the Globes is that, aside from the supposed “drunken fun” factor (which has faded greatly in recent years), since the ceremony covers both film and TV–the latter much less meaningful, because the Emmys are months away–the telecast tends to move at a sprightly pace, although the fact that there will now be winners of honorary awards in both film (Jeff Bridges) and TV (Carol Burnett) gives one a choice of bathroom breaks.  Also, the pairing of Andy Samberg and Sandra Oh as hosts will at least give the show an unpredictable dynamic.

Remember, though:  with 88 voters, a mere 19 choosing any given nominee is enough for a win.  And only one HFPA member is also a voting member of the Motion Picture Academy.  Now, on to the show!

(All times Pacific)

5:05PM:  The gag of the Samberg/Oh opening is that they’re too nice to say anything mean about anyone, which may summarize where we are post-Kevin Hartgate as well as anything. 

5:10PM:  The niceness continues, aside from a bit of snark directed Lady Gaga’s way, and Oh’s reprise of Natalie Portman’s gibe about male directors. 

5:13PM:  First award of the night!  With no less than the stars of A Star Is Born to present.  But a rather low-caliber category, TV Comedy Actor.  Michael Douglas wins, proving that many things in Hollywood may change, but not the Globes’ worship of star names.

5:19PM:  The buzz was that SPIDER-MAN: INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE would snatch the Best Animated Film crown from Pixar’s head, and it has.  A big night for Sony Animation. 

5:25PM:  THE FAVOURITE clip intro is an avalanche of innuendo.  We get it, they’re women and they have sex with each other. 

5:27PM:  Richard Madden wins the TV Actor Globe for BODYGUARD, a fun show that wasn’t exactly an acting showcase.  Matthew Rhys and Billy Porter should be gnashing their teeth. 

5:30PM:  THE AMERICANS scores what counts as an upset, beating shinier new nominees BODYGUARD, HOMECOMING, KILLING EVE and POSE.  A deserving valedictory victory.

5:36PM:  It’s the annual “What the hell is the HFPA?” moment.

5:39PM:  Continuing to clean out the TV section of the night, Supporting Actor goes to Ben Whishaw, another surprise–this time, at the expense of the favored Henry Winkler. 

5:43PM:  A coincidence that Ben Stiller was the presenter for Patricia Arquette’s win for ESCAPE AT DANNEMORA?  Probably not, as she was favored for a classic award-winner performance that required physical and vocal changes. 

5:45PM:  Arquette scores the first bleeps of the night!  Always a big moment. 

5:47PM:  The flu-shot gag… a little too uncomfortable to be really funny, and not willing to lean into the discomfort. 

5:53PM:  Steve Carell shows his face after the disaster that was WELCOME TO MARWEN.  The “it’s not Jack Nicholson” intro seems to confuse everyone, and he turns out to be presenting the first-ever lifetime achievement award for TV, which is named after its first recipient Carol Burnett.

6:02PM:  It’s rather interesting that Burnett’s speech is largely a producer’s view that the kind of TV she made couldn’t be financed anymore.  (Which wouldn’t be true if Netflix wanted to do one.)

6:03PM:  Idris Elba and Taylor Swift will be co-starring in the upcoming movie of CATS.  No, really. 

6:05PM:  Another surprise, as FIRST MAN takes the Best Score award that had been heavily tipped to MARY POPPINS RETURNS.

6:07PM:  Not remotely a surprise, as Best Song goes to “Shallow”. 

6:11PM:  There doesn’t seem to be a thread to the evening yet, with a mix so far of longshots and favorites, new names and veterans.  We’ll see if things get more coherent later on.

6:14PM  Someone needs to tell the audience that the show has started again. 

6:15PM:  Not surprisingly, GREEN BOOK isn’t having Viggo Mortensen present its clip. 

6:17PM:  Regina King is now your Oscar favorite, taking Supporting Actress for IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK.  This may herald a long tough night for VICE. 

6:21PM:  KIng will also have one of the most-quoted moments of the night with her challenge to produce projects staffed 50% by women. 

6:22PM:  Sandra Oh was the favorite to take Best TV Drama Actress for KILLING EVE, and it probably didn’t hurt that she’s the night’s co-host. 

6:27PM:  Ah, for the days when Amy Poehler was co-hosting the Globes…

6:30PM:  Mahershala Ali for Supporting Actor was GREEN BOOK’s surest bet. 

6:33PM:  It’s not too late to have Maya Rudolph and Poehler host the Oscars.

6:34PM:  A Best Screenplay win for GREEN BOOK was a much longer shot, and it probably seals VICE’s doom.  It’s also bad news for THE FAVOURITE.  Look for Universal to expand GREEN BOOK widely next weekend. 

6:40PM:  It didn’t seem to be SHARP OBJECTS’ night after Amy Adams lost, so the Patricia Clarkson win is a surprise.

6:43PM:  Christian Bale was such a likely winner that his Best Actor trophy doesn’t do much for VICE, which needs to win something other than his award.   Sadly, his children aren’t really named Banana and Burrito.  A rollicking speech, though. 

6:47PM:  It’s a longstanding policy, but now feels a bit weird that broadcasters like NBC will take ads from any and all competitors (TNT, HBO, Netflix, Amazon)… except other broadcasters.  They still exist in a bubble where ABC is a more serious adversary than anyone on cable or streaming.

6:50PM:  ROMA, as everyone knows by now, wasn’t eligible for Best Drama under HFPA rules.  (Alfonso Cuaron can still win Director.)  So Foreign Language Film is its big trophy. 

6:56PM:  Darren Criss beats Benedict Cumberbatch and Hugh Grant to finish out his victory lap on THE ASSASSINATION OF GIANNI VERSACE. 

7:02PM:  It’s time for the Movie lifetime achievement award to Jeff Bridges, but let’s take a moment to appreciate what a low-key career Chris Pine has been building for himself.  His STAR TREK franchise hadn’t made a new entry since 2016 (and may not again), but he’s been parlaying his stardom into all kinds of work ever since, from the musical INTO THE WOODS, to the 2nd lead in WONDER WOMAN, to the critically acclaimed HELL OR HIGH WATER (with Bridges), to a notable voice in SPIDER-VERSE.  Much more adventurous than most of his “Chris”-mates, and it’s been paying off. 

7:07PM:  When they talk about lifetime achievement, a career like Bridges’ is what they mean. 

7:12PM:  We should all aspire to be as happy as Jeff Bridges is. 

7:15PM:  Cuaron takes Best Director, an award ROMA needed to prove that it transcends the Foreign Film category. 

7:22PM:  The conspicuously not-nominated Sam Elliott gets his moment by presenting the clip for A STAR IS BORN. 

7:25PM:  It hasn’t been a night for repeat winners, but Rachel Brosnahan bucks the trend witha TV Comedy Actress win for THE MARVELOUS MRS MAISEL. 

7:28PM:  Netflix wrests the Best TV Comedy win away from Amazon with the prize for THE KOMINSKY METHOD, a show Globe voters seem to love more than most. 

7:36PM:  Dick Van Dyke gives Carol Burnett a run for her living legend money with an appearance to introduce the MARY POPPINS RETURNS clip.

7:37PM:  THE ASSASSINATION OF GIANNI VERSACE wins once again, as the Globes resist awarding something new in the Limited Series category.

7:45PM:  THE FAVOURITE lost Screenplay, but Olivia Colman takes Comedy Actress, which may put her on a collision course with Lady Gaga at the Oscars. 

7:47PM:  Between Colman’s bleep and calling Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz “my bitches,” no one seems to be having more fun tonight.  (Well, maybe Jeff Bridges.)

7:54PM:  Really?  “From ISLE OF DOGS, Bill Murray”?

7:56PM:  GREEN BOOK gets the lifeline it desperately needed with a Comedy Film win, and is now back in the Oscar race. 

8:04PM:  The biggest shock of the night:  Glenn Close beats Lady Gaga for Best Actress.  Now it’s a party. 

8:13PM:  Close’s speech served as a keynote address for her Oscar run. 

8:14PM:  Bradley Cooper isn’t having a good night, although it could still improve at the end.

8:15PM:  Rami Malek was very good in BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY, but this win is a tribute to the gigantic hit that film became, defying all expectations. 

8:16PM:  Don’t think Malek thanked his director, the controversial Bryan Singer. 

8:17PM:  Remember when I said Glenn Close was the upset of the night?  That was nothing compared to BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY winning Best Drama.  I mean…

8:18PM:  Forget it, Jake.  It’s the Globes.

Just what in the hell did any of that mean for the Oscar race?  I guess we’ll all find out, but an Oscars where the top 2 contenders are BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY and GREEN BOOK isn’t what the Academy had in mind when they adjusted the voting rolls.  Both, however, now have to be considered serious contenders, while A STAR IS BORN and VICE took serious hits.  ROMA was always going to be outside this part of the race due to HFPA rules, so it’s still a mystery part of the Oscar puzzle.

Next up:  nominations from the Writers Guild and Directors Guild. 

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."