The ever-expanding Critics Choice Association is now taking on the world. The group said Wednesday that it will introduce the World Movie Awards, designed to honor the finest in non-English-language films, beginning in 2022.
The CCA said this global expansion has been in the planning stages for several years and has gained fresh impetus thanks to the recent formation of an International branch of the organization, which began enlisting new members this spring.
With the current well-publicized troubles of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association — including the cancellation by NBC of the 2022 Golden Globes — plus the globalization of the motion picture industry in general, the CCA has decided to strike while the iron is hot. Notably, it is offering a home to many legitimate international critics and journalists who have not been welcomed by the HFPA’s insular entry requirements (including the revelation of not having a single Black member), which that organization is vowing to change and reform after being threatened with essentially a boycott by studios and publicists.
“It has been clear for some time that many, if not most, of the leading critics and entertainment journalists reporting for foreign audiences were not welcome in the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, so the CCA has opened its big tent and welcomed in dozens of them,” Critics Choice Association CEO Joey Berlin said today.
In addition to longtime CCA members Claude Budin-Juteau and Ron Jacobsohn, new members of the International branch include Kjersti Flaa, the Norwegian journalist whose attempts to become a member of HFPA sparked a lawsuit and helped lead to many of that org’s current headaches. Also joining membership are Hyunjin Ahn, Didier Allouch, Nelson Aspen, Silke Burmeister, Yong Chavez, Michael Conte, Roberto Croci, Jean-Philippe Darquenne, Gui de Mulder, Frank Fastner, Rosa Gamazo, Emmanuel Itier, Rachel Kasuch, Elaine Lipworth, Maggie Ma, Silvia Maestrutti, Sarah Gerlach Madsen, Samantha Ofole-Prince, Gill Pringle, Jeanne Prisyazhnaya, Franck Ragaine, Romain Raynaldy, Wakako Rolinger, Rodrigo Salem, Yuki Saruwatari, Virag Vida, Wladimir Weltman and Nurgul Zhunussova.
Many more applicants are being considered, including I am told current and past members of the HFPA who are qualified and might want to join.
The CCA International branch will be instrumental in planning and executing the World Movie Awards. The CCA also plans to reach out to critics groups around the world regarding the awards.
“As the world flattens and the best films are distributed all around the planet, often day-and-date, our mission has expanded,” Berlin said. “Our purpose as a collective of critics is to help audiences find the good stuff at a time when viewing options have exploded, while simultaneously helping motion picture makers find their audiences. With the amazing growth of multinational distribution platforms and high-quality content producers such as Netflix, Amazon and Apple alongside wonderful films from traditional studios all over the world, the time has come to celebrate the best cinematic storytelling being produced outside of Hollywood.”
Members of the International branch will also be eligible to vote for the established Critics Choice Awards if they meet the organization’s voting requirements. The CCA now has four branches — Film, TV, Documentary and International — and almost 500 active members.
The Critics Choice Awards for the best in film and TV have been previously announced to take place on Sunday, January 9, 2022 and broadcast on the CW.
FULL DISCLOSURE: I am a member of Critics Choice, have served on the Documentary selection committee, and also serve as president of the separate Film branch (and not involved in the formation or execution of the International branch and World Movie Awards).
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