Backstage At The Golden Globes

Diane Haithman, Ray Richmond and Anthony D’Alessandro are contributing to Deadline’s Golden Globes coverage.

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Justice prevailed at the Beverly Hilton as Argo nabbed the best drama Golden Globe and the film’s director Ben Affleck, overlooked last week by the Academy for best director, got his due by the Hollywood Foreign Press with a best directing Globe. So after the Academy overlooked Affleck in the directing category, what did his Oscar strategists have to say to him? What reasons did they give him in terms of why he was overlooked? In short, the director was mum on that answer and wasn’t bogged down by voting mechanics over at the Academy. Rather, he gratefully exclaimed “Look, we got nominated for seven Oscars. And if one isn’t happy with that, your prospects for long-term happiness is pretty damned. I’m the luckiest guy in the world.” Flanked by his producers Grant Heslov and George Clooney, Affleck added, “I’m a member of the Academy and we got nominated by the people who made movies we all admire and respect.” “What Academy are you talking about?,” joked Heslov. “To frame this (race) about me not getting the nomination I didn’t get, isn’t right,” said Affleck then quipping, “But hey — I didn’t get the acting category and no one is saying I got snubbed there!” Clooney threw his 10 cents in on the entire Academy misfire in the director category: “I was disappointed. I think Ben made a phenomenal film. He should have been nominated, but you can’t figure out what goes on in the Academy. We talked about this for the next day. We got seven nominations! And it all happened out of what Ben put together. We’re not out of the water yet.” Remarking on Affleck’s career, from Good Will Hunting co-star and Globe/Oscar winning scribe to Gigli headliner to auteur, Clooney exclaimed, “Ben was in actor jail for a couple of years. We’ve all been there, even me. I was in Batman & Robin. But it’s how you handle yourself as a performer during those times. Ben directed his way out of it. He did Gone Baby Gone and The Town, films which made money and with Argo it put him further in the right direction. I’m proud to work with him — and I hate him.” The gang was joined on stage by their composer Alexandre Desplat, actors Bryan Cranston, John Goodman, Tate Donovan, Alan Arkin and Argo source material CIA agent Tony Mendez.

The Golden Globe comedy musical win for Les Miserables comes at a prime time for the film, following its record UK opening, not to mention, right in the middle of its steady domestic run which has minted an estimated $119.2 million as of today. Bringing the film in at a lengthy 157 minutes, Tom Hooper was faced with the difficult choice of what to keep and what to cut. “‘I Dreamed A Dream’ — I think that’s the greatest of Anne’s performances. I was beholden to that cut. Who would want to cut it? But the most painful edit I had to make was a little scene after Gavroche was shot dead and Eddie Redmayne’s Marius shoots the soldier dead.” One thing director Hooper didn’t do during the filming of Les Miserables was shut down the production every time someone got a sore throat. This was the case when Sacha Baron Cohen lost his voice on set. Hooper sent the comedic actor home on voice rest. “This was an ensemble piece with 204 actors, and I certainly wasn’t going to shut down the set 204 times. We would still be in production. But, one guy (Sacha) proved he didn’t have the vocal stamina!” joshed Hooper who was joined backstage with castmembers Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, Hugh Jackman, Baron Cohen, songwriters Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schonberg as well as producers Debra Heyward, Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner.

Backstage, Jessica Chastain called it a “bittersweet Thursday for me” when she found out she had been nominated for an Academy Award and director Kathryn Bigelow had not. She said that the two were on a plane when Bigelow came to her and told her. She called the moment “like a dagger in my heart” but said that Bigelow immediately insisted on focusing on the positive. “There is not a bitter, angry bone in her body,” Chastain said. “Even at that moment she was protecting me” from her own sadness, the actress said.

Related: Golden Globes Fashion: Who Wore What?

As the last winner to appear backstage, Daniel Day-Lewis was coy about former President Bill Clinton’s surprise appearance onstage at the Globes. “A couple of us knew,” he said, with a tiny smile. “But even knowing it, it still was amazing to see him here.” As far as how the appearance was planned goes, Day-Lewis said “you’d have to ask Mr. Spielberg but said that the director and Clinton “go back a long way” and “no doubt conversations led to that.” The actor said that he was very honored to have his own conversation afterward with Clinton, whom Day-Lewis noted is “a Lincolnian scholar himself.” Day-Lewis said of the role that he “circled it for 7 years before I heard myself say, to my amazement: Yes, let’s do this,” he said. “The last thing I wanted to do was to go down in flames for desecrating the greatest president.” Day-Lewis was asked what question he’d most like to ask Lincoln if they’d had the chance to meet. “That is so unfair to ask. I’d be paralyzed with all the questions jumping on each other I probably couldn’t say a word,” he responded.

An ebullient Hugh Jackman positively danced into the press room following his win for best actor in a motion picture — comedy or musical for Les Miserables. He called the experience of making the film “unforgettable” and continues to “thank my lucky stars that I got this role.” Pointing at director Tom Hooper, he said, “Luckily I didn’t piss this guy off too much and luckily he cast me.” Jackman said he still marvels at what they were all able to achieve in making the film. He called making a movie musical “the Mount Everest of filmmaking” while adding, “These guys were crazy enough to do it. I think Tom Hooper and the others have redefined the movie musical. I’m just proud to be a part of that. How will I celebrate? Come on, I’m Australian!” He also shared a story about how he tried during shooting of Les Miserables to lose 10 pounds by not drinking any liquid for 36 hours. “What I’ll tell everyone is, never do this.” Jackman also took a moment to defend the masculinity of a man who sings and dances in a musical. “All my mates at home make fun of me constantly,” he admitted. “But for the record, the idea that singing and dancing isn’t masculine is about the craziest thing I’ve heard in my life. Fifty years ago, a man who couldn’t sing and dance never got a girl.” He called his Les Miserables character Jean Valjean “one of the great literary characters of all time…To me, he is the epitome of a man.”

No, Jodie Foster assured everyone backstage after her extraordinary and stirring speech accepting her lifetime achievement award — she is not quitting acting, despite what she seemed to indicate onstage. “Oh, I could never stop acting,” she said. “I’m not retiring. They’d have to drag me behind a team of horses (to keep me away from acting).” She quickly added, “If you’ve got anything perfect for me I’ll be directing tomorrow.” It still wasn’t entirely clear what was changing in her life from her comments backstage, but Foster strongly indicated that, at 50, an old chapter was closing and a new one opening. “I guess this is one of the first life achievement awards I’ve ever gotten. I feel like I’m graduating high school or college. It’s a big moment and I just wanted to say what’s most in my heart. Hopefully I’m going to be doing different things (now) than when I was 6 and 10 and 12. My work is evolving…I feel like acting has been this amazing school for me. I got to learn from these amazing artists.” She also indicated again that she really, really wants to do more directing. “I’m using all of the things I learned and feel and express through directing.” Foster took a moment also to explain her comments about both Mel Gibson and her mother. “I know Mel Gibson extremely well,” she emphasized. “The man I know is a true and loyal friend, and considerate and loving. And I think it’s important when people are struggling not to run away from them if you love them…I feel very protective of (my friends).” Of her mother, Foster said, “My mom is an amazing inspiration to me. She picked me up from school and took me to see foreign films. She wouldn’t let me do my homework…She wanted me to be respected, that was her number one goal for me.” She also took a moment to give a shout-out to Meryl Streep, calling her “the greatest. She does something beyond acting. It’s a transcendent experience watching her work.”

Related: Golden Globes: Jodie Foster Opens Up (Sort Of) During DeMille Speech

Onstage, Lena Dunham was appropriately gushy, girly, neurotic and self-deprecating as she took the stage twice as best actress in a comedy series for Girls and later when the series won for best comedy series. She got played off the stage both times. In her first speech, she thanked co-star Adam Driver for making her feel “not like a cartoon character but a person who could express emotions.” In her second onstage speech, all the “girls” came onstage to squeal in unison. About herself in relation to her team, she said: “It took a village to raise this very demented child.” Backstage Dunham was equally giddy, but she and Girls producer Judd Apatow had to come down from Cloud Nine to address the well-publicized criticism of the autobiographical show that it’s not diverse enough. While waiting for Dunham to arrive, Apatow said the show had a “strong vision” and argued that the world is too diverse for any one voice to speak for a generation. When you receive criticism, Dunham said, “you have to be elegant about it” and that criticism comes with the gift of being able to express yourself creatively. She quipped with a giggle: “I’m sure people dislike the show for plenty of reasons.” In response to a question, Dunham said that she is not engaged, adding: “I don’t want to get married until all gay people can get married.” Next up was question about her thoughts on openly gay Jodie Foster’s speech, which she called “mind-blowingly beautiful.” Dunham ended her comments with one more little quip about herself and her groundbreaking show: “It’s a tough gig and I feel like if I was as brave and reckless as people think I would have worn flats. I drank the Kool-Aid and wore the high heels.”

Claire Danes‘ winning a Golden Globe has become something of an annual affair. She’s now been nominated four times (the first when she was all of 15) and won all four, including now twice in succession for Showtime’s Homeland. “It’s our annual date!” she exulted. “I was so green at 15 that I didn’t know what a Golden Globe was,” she said. She recalled that time having seen Quentin Tarantino speaking to David Hasselhoff on the red carpet and thinking it quite surreal. “And now he was the first person I saw again.” She admitted to understandably liking the choices that the Hollywood Foreign Press makes. “They make fresh, daring choices all the time, and it’s a great party and an excuse to get drunk together. Not that I’m doing much of that tonight. I’ve got to feed the baby.” Indeed, Danes spoke backstage about what being a mom (and now an expectant mom) has meant to her life. “I don’t even know how it’s changed me yet,” she admitted. Well, to be sure, one way it’s changed her is in her growing size. “I had to strap myself into this dress and can’t go to the bathroom unless I take the entire thing off,” she admitted. “I used to be sort of sleep-deprived but this is taking it to another level. But I want (my character) to become a mom. I can’t imagine any other reality now.” When someone asked how she remains sane given her work schedule and motherhood, Danes said, “I really try to leave work behind when I get home. I’m getting better at it with each passing day. (Homeland) is written so well, I trust myself and the material enough that I can afford to let it go and know that it’ll be there when I return the next day.” She added that she has “all sorts of funny rituals that help me enter and disengage from that imaginary world that are helpful.”

So what makes Mark Andrews — a guy — the right choice to direct Brave, a Pixar animated film about a Scottish princess? “Listen, I’m not really a guy! I’m a storyteller. It doesn’t matter who the character is on the outside. If we discussed ‘What does a teenage girl sound like, particularly one who happens to be Scottish and at her heart is independent and has a fiery nature; that goes without gender. All those qualities describe what she is on top and they raise the stakes (of the story).” What also makes Andrews ripe for the job, is that he’s a kid at heart — a theme which Brave grapples with. “Growing up is a necessity, but we grow up in physical form. I’m still 12 or 16 years old sometimes. And I talk to a lot of older people who still have a youthfulness inside. You change from adolescence to an adult, but you still go out into the broader world, which can be scary. We wanted to make a movie that empowered children as well as their parents who stand back and take a supportive role.”

“I loved the show and I saw my mom perform this role when I was eight years old,” said a reflective, poignant Anne Hathaway about her role as Fantine in Les Miserables, “It seemed like an amazing challenge to tell the story about the destruction and redemption of a soul.” Talking about her preparation, “I got to the point where I worked so hard on the song, I felt confident for it to be performed in the film. Then I realized my approach was wrong. If I sang it the way I would on stage, then I would abandon the vocal vanity. So I performed it the way I thought it should be performed and shared it with everyone, specifically (director) Tom Hooper and (producer) Cameron Mackintosh.” Having finally arrived at a point in her career where she can play challenging roles, Hathaway said, “I never felt pigeonholed by princess roles, but I knew who I wanted to be and the type of roles I wanted to portray. Others wouldn’t see me that way, it was up to me to convince them.” In fact, it was Hathaway’s fellow competition in the category, Sally Field (Lincoln), who inspired her to be more than she could be. After all, Field took strides to shed her Gidget persona early on in her career. “If you do the work,” said Hathaway,”People will listen.”

A flippant, but grateful, Jennifer Lawrence stood in the back pressroom after cherishing her Globe comedy-musical actress win for Silver Linings Playbook. “What do I do?” said Lawrence confused by the microphone protocol with the press. Does she select those raising their hands? In the film, Lawrence’s bipolar romantic counterpart Pat, played by Bradley Cooper, wigs out every time he hears the Stevie Wonder song “My Cherie Amour,” and that’s something she completely relates to. “I lose it every time I hear the song ‘Come On Baby Light My Fire’,” said Lawrence. Apparently, she connects the song to a bad moment when she was playing tennis. “Every time I hear the song, I want to throw a racket.” In regards to Will Ferrell calling her “JLa,” Lawrence is used to the nickname. “I’ve been called that since I was a kid.” Talking about her jumping-off point for the part of erratic widow Tiffany, Lawrence said she merely threw her faith in the script and David O. Russell. Exclaims Lawrence, “I was way too young for the part initially, but I guess I turned that around.”

Michael Haneke, the writer-director of the predictable foreign language film victor Amour from Austria, joked while receiving his Globe that he never thought he’d receive an award in Hollywood by an Austrian (after being handed his trophy by presenter Arnold Schwarzenegger). His chat backstage with the gathered media was translated from his native tongue, stressing that the subject of his film (Alzheimer’s disease) is “independent of the country in which we make the film. It’s a universal theme…Everyone on Earth has experienced this kind of trauma in his own family.” Haneke credited his actors and their “touching” style for the reception his film has received.

Django Unchained director-screenwriter Quentin Tarantino addressed the racial brouhaha about his film head-on backstage, “First, I was never stirred by how much I put the N-word in my script. If someone out there is saying I use it more in my movie than it was used in the Antebellum South, well, feel free to make that case. But no one is making that case. They’re saying I should lie, whitewash and massage (my script) and I don’t do that when it comes to my characters.” Slavery, in Tarantino’s opinion, is prevalent today, and that’s what bothers him. “Go to Malaysia and there’s sexual slavery. However, I’m more concerned about the slavery in America: The drug laws that put more Blacks in jail than they did in the ’70s, the prisoners that are traded back and forth between public and private prisons — that’s straight-up slavery.” Don Cheadle followed Tarantino to the mic, so that he could talk about his Globe actor win for TV comedy for House Of Lies, and before taking any questions, quipped, “Please no N***** questions! Black people questions are all right, though.” But he did find himself asked about the issue of race. “I’m 48 years old. I think when I look toward my kids, the relationships that they have, the sort of racism that I dealt with growing up where I grew up is completely foreign to them,” the actor said. Issues of race and sexual orientation are irrelevant to 13 and 14-year-olds, he added. “I think hip-hop and the pop culture for that [generation] has challenged those prejudices,” Cheadle said. Cheadle was asked about how the current business climate in America informs House Of Lies, about high-level management consultants. “I think it helped to give some context to the show [in] understanding of the people we are dealing with, that the people in my pod are going to try to defeat. “ He said the current economic client allows the series to rip stories from the headlines.

Backstage, Adele called her win “ amazing, very surreal and quite hilarious. It’s not my field.” She said that while receiving a Grammy is an amazing experience, a Golden Globe is “mind-boggling. Amazing actors get these awards.” She joked that she was feeling overexcited tonight because “this is my first night out since I had a child.” The singer said she can’t remember the name of the first Bond film she saw (“I’m only 24”) but it starred Pierce Brosnan going down the River Thames on a boat. She teased that Brosnan was her first Bond, but Daniel Craig is her favorite. Adele called doing a song for a Bond film “a huge responsibility” but joked that it was especially enjoyable because she usually writes about heartbreak and with her current happy life “I don’t think I’m going to be devastated again.”

Scoring Life Of Pi hit close to home for composer Mychael Danna, “India is like a second home to me. My wife is Indian and we go back there a lot.” Not to mention, Danna has continually been a student of world music, which lent itself to achieving a dynamic Eastern sound in Ang Lee’s Life Of Pi. “It was a very difficult film to make out of all the films I’ve scored. I read the book 15 years ago and felt obligated to bring the essence of it to life and not to shortchange the magic of the book,” said the composer on his dedication to the source material. The trick for the composer lied in jiving with Ang Lee’s emotional sensibility: “He’s the master of subtlety. He wants emotion to be held, built up and released. That’s something I worked on musically.” Winning was quite a feat for Danna. Not only did he nab his first Globe win ever after his first nomination, but he overcame such vets in this category such as John Williams (Lincoln) and Alexandre Desplat (Argo). About his competition, Danna explained, “Composers are in direct competition with each other, but in a roomful of people like this, we’re the ones talking to each other. We go through the same things every day, we respect each other and in a sense we’re brothers. If you see Alexandre Desplat and I, we’re the ones sitting in the corner drinking scotch together.”

Backstage, Kevin Costner, winner best actor miniseries or TV movie, said of the Western mentality in Hatfields & McCoys: “I think that people came to America with an awesome promise. If they were tough enough, mean enough and resourceful enough and hung onto what they had, they could have a life”. He added that the American dream often came at the expense of Native Americans but “I’m not ashamed of the resourcefulness it took to carve out a life. He called Westerns America’s Shakespeare and added he has always been more interested in the language of the period than the violence. Costner added that he has never liked dressing up for Halloween as a child but has always loved the movies for the opportunity to “be able to go into another world and start to make believe.” In his role as Anse Hatfield, he said, he eventually had to “out-act the beard.”

Damian Lewis followed up his Emmy win last September with a Golden Globe triumph as actor in a drama series for his work in Showtime’s Homeland, and backstage he graciously admitted to the assembled media, “I feel extremely lucky.” Lewis, who is British and appeared backstage with the Homeland production team following his show’s win for drama series, added, “There were a lot of unbelievably talented American actors out there who could do (this role) justice. (The American accent) is really a technical issue to find the cadence. Rhythm is more important than actual correct vowel sounds. We don’t all sound like Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins.”

When she accepted her second Golden Globe award (she also won a special ensemble award for the movie Short Cuts), Julianne Moore joked onstage about two people who made a difference for her in her ability to portray Sarah Palin: “Tina Fey and Katie Couric.” Backstage, appearing with Jay Roach, Danny Strong and Gary Goetzman, she reiterated Fey’s importance in shaping the outcome of the 2008 presidential election, saying that she was glad she got a chance to mention Fey in her speech because Fey and others were “very subtly, within their own industry, quite powerful political presences.” Moore said that she was never criticized in public for her a negative portrayal.  “In no way was this a biopic or a character assassination,” she said, but a film about “how we choose our leaders.”  She said that Palin was apparently a devoted parent and had other positive qualities but “the conclusion that I drew was that she was simply unprepared for the vice presidency.”

Jay Roach, who produced and directed the Best Mini/TV-Movie winner Game Change, praised HBO in his acceptance speech as a “heroic, brave operation” and “an incredible place to make movies.” Backstage with the media a few minutes later, he stressed that he loves making political films and telling great stories and that at home he’s alienating his family because he “talks about nothing but politics. I’m so interested in what makes government work, what makes a great leader. It’s a constant source of anxiety for me. I’m always asking the question, ‘Can’t we do better than this?’? To be sure, he doesn’t believe he could have done better with Julianne Moore — who also won a Globe tonight for actress in a TV-movie/miniseries — portraying Sarah Palin. “I’ve never seen anyone work as hard or collaborate with someone who cared more about making sure it was right. I can’t imagine making this film with somebody else. It doesn’t even seem possible. Once we were able to transform her look, there was no question.” Roach, who came backstage with the film’s exec producer Gary Goetzman and writer Danny Strong, said that the writers of the book Game Change on which the film was based, John Heilermann and Mark Halperin, are busy working on their next book and indicated that another movie could come out of that. “I’m not sure what the movie might be,” he said. “We made this one from a section of their first book. They’re working like crazy to write the sequel book.” Strong was asked if he might soon be making a return visit to AMC’s Mad Men, on which he plays recurring character Danny Siegel. “Start the petition now!” he quipped.

“My knees gave a little bit,” exclaimed Django Unchained supporting actor Christoph Waltz on his second back-to-back Golden Globe win after collecting one for another Quentin Tarantino film Inglourious Basterds in 2010. However, Waltz isn’t shocked by the controversy that Django has stirred among those in the African-American community, rather he thinks there should be more debate in the cinema about social and historical issues. “The film should be controversial since it’s a story set against the background of slavery. However, (people forget) it’s not a movie about slavery, rather a hero’s journey and a love story. As such, it doesn’t mean that Quentin Tarantino should take the controversial part out. When (a director) chooses a controversial subject, then they should be prepared for the discussion. I wish there were more movies likes this in society today.”

  1. I may be wrong about Jodi’s intentions, but was she begging for work part of the time? And the other time she was saying “buzz off”, I’m a private person and don’t want my life splashed all over T*M*Z (like Mel)? But she realizes that those who are “public” are the ones who get the work and who go to the events and rub elbows….but I think she comes off as desperate for work and maybe companionship. Look — it was a lifetime achievement award and she should have gone another way….that’s just my opinion.

  2. To all the family of the the Golden Globe Awards. What a privilege to even be mentioned in the awards. You are all fantasticly girfted in the work you do: from the person cleaning to the best of the best. You bring a few hours of pure joy to the publice when there is so much sadness in the world. Many of the films have inspirational messages that give we mere mortals hope. Thank you so very much and congratulation to one and all. Lots of love and admiration. Gerene Richard.

    our world.

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