You’ll probably have woken to news of a major Golden Globes backlash as celebrities, industry leaders and TV giants distance themselves from the controversial awards show. So what exactly is going on?
Well, it all started when a collective of industry bodies and A-listers took a stand against the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), the small group of international journalists who vote on the Golden Globe awards, after an exposé highlighted failings.
Earlier this year, the Los Angeles Times uncovered that HFPA has longstanding issues with diversity, noting that the group has zero Black members among its 87 voting members, a point the HFPA has recently vowed to change.
The newspaper’s investigations detailed many “ethical lapses”, including members of the HFPA being courted by film studios, as well as barriers faced by black journalists. The HFPA’s former president, Phillip Berk, was also expelled for sharing an article with other members that referred to Black Lives Matter as “a “racist hate group”.
Following backlash, TV giant NBC revealed that it will not broadcast the Golden Globes in 2022, with other TV networks such as Netflix, WarnerMedia and Amazon also distancing themselves from the awards.
In a statement, NBC explained: “We continue to believe that the HFPA is committed to meaningful reform. However, change of this magnitude takes time and work, and we feel strongly that the HFPA needs time to do it right.”
“As such, NBC will not air the 2022 Golden Globes,” they added. “Assuming the organisation executes on its plan, we are hopeful we will be in a position to air the show in January 2023.”
In response, the HFPA released a detailed timeline of proposed changes; the statement read: “Regardless of the next air date of the Golden Globes, implementing transformational changes as quickly – and as thoughtfully – as possible remains the top priority for our organisation. We invite our partners in the industry to the table to work with us on the systemic reform that is long overdue, both in our organisation as well as within the industry at large.”
Following the fall out, Golden Globe winner Tom Cruise returned his three awards for “Born on the Fourth of July” and “Jerry Maguire”, and Scarlett Johansson and Mark Ruffalo also slammed HPPA for their lack of diversity and action.
“Unless there is necessary fundamental reform within the organisation, I believe it is time that we take a step back from the HFPA,” Scarlett Johansson said.
We hope to see serious change on the back of this.