Golden Globes Show Goes On Without Celebrities
Hollywood’s A-listers are staying home, but this Sunday’s Golden Globes could still offer plenty of reasons to party, from history-making female filmmakers to posthumous glory for a beloved Black film star.
Second only to the Oscars, the season-opening Globes which also honour the best in television can massively boost or fatally dash the hopes of this year’s film awards frontrunners like “The Trial of the Chicago 7” and “Nomadland.”
Aaron Sorkin’s ensemble drama about anti-war riots in 1968, and Chloe Zhao’s paean to Americans roaming the West in vans, fueled by their timely themes of protest and joblessness, are battling for the Globes’ top prize.
In contrast, “Nomadland” throws Oscar winner Frances McDormand in with a rag-tag bunch of non-actors who truly live on the open road, a “daring” move that may see it overtake its rivals, according to Variety awards editor Tim Gray.
“It’s the definition of a little film… a film that stays with you,” he said, adding he still tipped “Chicago 7” to win best drama film.
They will have to best Anthony Hopkins’ dementia drama “The Father,” #MeToo thriller “Promising Young Woman,” and “Mank,” David Fincher’s ode to “Citizen Kane,” which topped the overall nominations with six.
While the battle for best drama is tight, Zhao is seen as the clear favorite to scoop the best director. It would be a historic win, as she would be only the second female victor in the Globes’ long history and the first woman of Asian descent.
The Hollywood Foreign Press Association had nominated just five female directors in the last 77 years, but Zhao competes Sunday alongside Emerald Fennell (“Promising Young Woman”) and Regina King (“One Night in Miami”).
Several movies with predominantly Black casts including “One Night in Miami” missed out on best film nominations from the HFPA’s mainly-white, 90-odd voters.
However, one African American star is a strong bet for lead actor honors, the late Chadwick Boseman.
Boseman, who died last August from cancer after a string of seminal roles including “Black Panther,” put in an arguably career-best performance as a tragic young trumpet player in 1920s blues drama “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.”
“This is his best part, and the backstory is that he knew this might be his last performance, so that’s kind of hard to resist,” said Gray.
“But it’s not a guaranteed win,” he added, with Hopkins a formidable contender as well as Riz Ahmed as a musician going deaf in “Sound of Metal.”
On the actress side, Carey Mulligan’s “Promising Young Woman” — a revenge-seeker who lurks at bars, feigning drunkenness to lure men into revealing their own misogyny — leads a pack including McDormand and Viola Davis as legendary crooner Ma Rainey.
Unlike the Oscars, the Globes split most movie categories into drama and “musical or comedy,” with Sacha Baron Cohen’s “Borat” sequel and the Disney+ film of the hit musical “Hamilton” leading the latter fields.
Cohen also has a best-supporting actor nod for “Chicago 7,” while the Globes offer “Hamilton” its best shot at film honors after the Oscars declared the taping of Broadway shows ineligible.