Not since the Manchester By the Sea year of 2017 has Amazon Studios generated as many as the 10 Golden Globes nominations it received Wednesday morning.
The noms came from a diverse number of films — three for Borat Subsequent Moviefilm (nods for Best Picture, Sacha Baron Cohen for Best Actor and Maria Bakalova for Best Actress in Musical or Comedy), three for One Night In Miami (Regina King for Best Director and two for Leslie Odom Jr for Best Supporting Actor and Best Original Song), and one for Sound of Metal (Riz Ahmed). Add to that two nominations for Steve McQueen’s superb Small Axe (Best Limited Series, John Boyega for Best Supporting Actor) and one for the series Hunters (Al Pacino for Best Actor) and the accolades indicated that the HFPA responded to Amazon’s attempts to evolve its slates for both film and television.
“I’m thrilled in particular for what it says about our film slate,” Salke told Deadline. “We have extended our vision to create slates with really diverse voices that can break through culturally. From Regina to Riz, Sacha and Steve McQueen, there is no better talent for us to be in business with, and that is reflected in the content today. We see this continuing with Coming 2 America, the Michael B. Jordan-starrer Without Remorse and the Chris Pratt-starrer Tomorrow War which is in the final stages of acquisition from Paramount and Skydance.”
Salke acknowledged that some of the early success has come from acquisitions, while the development of homegrown films take time to catch up. But the acquisitions have built bridges toward lasting talent relationships, she said.
“There is a lot more coming from the film side since our shift from prestige to bigger films, and part of the film strategy transition comes in the relationships we are building,” Salke said. “Both Steve McQueen and Riz Ahmed have overall deals with Amazon that came out of this, and Sacha and I are always cooking up things for the future. I’m agnostic where these films come from, and there is definitely a big continued investment in our home grown slate. We will continue to invest big in films that drive engagement across Amazon Prime globally, as we continue to build that. We are creating a home for talent, and it’s not just a transactional acquisition business.”