Golden Globes Film: HFPA Reaches For The Stars And Grabs Them

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69th Golden Globe Award Nominations

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association loves their stars. And that’s why there were really no surprises in their nominations for the Golden Globes this morning. There were also no major embarrassments like last year, when they nominated The Tourist for Best Picture, Actor and Actress. Damn, that was fun.

I had a conversation with a publicist last night and we predicted almost this entire list. HFPA members often share their opinions, and you know going in that even if George Clooney’s The Ides Of March has not turned up in any significant way in other awards contests so far, the HFPA was going to give it a boost. One Italian member told me last week it was the only movie this person really loved even though it is a film about American politics. Even Clooney (who between writing, directing and Best Motion Picture Drama noms for this and a best actor-drama nod for The Descendants got a personal haul of four nominations) seemed to sense he was going to score big with this when I asked him about it an interview last week. “It’s a funny thing. The Globes folks really like this a lot,” he said. “It was interesting to go to that (HFPA) press conference because internationally everyone sort of related to it on their own. In Italy, they think it’s about Berlusconi. It’s funny to see how things play in different arenas.” And it also helps to be George Clooney, who scored this exact scenario in 2005 when he was thrice nominated for writing, directing and picture on Good Night, And Good Luck and Best Supporting Actor for Syriana — winning for the latter and going on to get the same kind of Oscar recognition for those films. Whether this very specific boost for Ides Of March — well-reviewed (85% at Rotten Tomatoes) but until today awards-challenged — results in a similar scenario remains to be seen.

In recent years, the correlation between Golden Globe winners and Oscar winners has been dwindling. In fact, since 2004 the Globes Best Motion Picture-Drama has matched the eventual Best Picture Oscar winner only once — for 2008’s Slumdog Millionaire. In 2004, the Globes went with The Aviator over Oscar winner Million Dollar Baby. In 2005  Munich, Capote and eventual Oscar Best Pic choice Crash first all failed to get even the equivalent Globe nomination (Brokeback Mountain won at the Globes). In 2006, Babel won the Globe over eventual Oscar victor The Departed (although the latter’s director, Martin Scorsese, took both). In 2007, the HFPA went with Atonement over Oscar choice No Country For Old Men. In 2009, the Globes went big for Avatar only to see that as the film’s last big awards hurrah before Oscar crowned The Hurt Locker. And last year, Sony’s The Social Network achieved a Globes victory only to be run over by The King’s Speech in every subsequent contest. At the Globes after-party for the Weinstein Company, a defiant Harvey Weinstein predicted this was only the “beginning” and that his film would eventually triumph, Of course, he turned out to be right. (more…)

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