Green Book director Peter Farrelly, accepting the Golden Globe for best film in the musical or comedy category, said the story about pianist Don Shirley and his Italian-American driver overcoming racial differences could offer a universal lesson.
“If they can find common ground,” said Farrelly, who also wrote and exec produced the film, “we all can. All we have to do is talk and to not judge people by their differences, but to look for what we have in common.” He concluded that we all desire “love, happiness and to be treated equally.”
Earlier in the evening, Green Book, from Universal/DreamWorks/Participant Media, took the best screenplay Globe, and co-star (with Viggo Mortensen) Mahershala Ali took a best supporting actor trophy.
Farrelly, presented the award by Bill Murray, thanked the cast, studios, and his wife and kids before praising Shirley as “a great man and under-appreciated genius who couldn’t play the music he wanted to play because of the color of his skin.”
“This story,” Farrelly said, after demanding that the orchestra not cut him off, “gave me hope and I wanted to share that hope with you.” He continued that we’re “still living in dividing times” before beseeching the audience to find common ground.
Watch the speech below.
The film has received criticism from some of Shirley’s family members for what they say are inaccuracies in the portrayal of the pianist and his driver as they traveled the Jim Crow South in the early 1960s.