Golden Globes: Why Is Everyone Boycotting The Once Star-Studded Award Ceremony?

The Golden Globes is arguably one of the world’s most well-known red carpet events, founded in 1944, it has promises audiences an evening of glitz, glamour and a star-studded guest list to rival The Met Gala. And although the bash itself might only last one night, celebrities, producers and advertisers alike leverage the priceless coverage to help boost movie sales, catapult careers and create new trail-blazing connections. Plus, it’s an opportunity to see hosts like Ricky Gervais roast the A-list audience with varying response. 

This year though, things are shaping up to be a little different. 

2022’s Golden Globes ceremony is to take place this Monday (10th Jan at 2am GMT), except the ceremony’s former broadcaster NBC – which aired the awards for several years – will not be showing the ceremony, after an exposé found there were no black voters and included claims of inappropriate “freebies”. 

Although the nominations for the various categories – including ‘best actress’ and ‘best screenwriter’ – were announced back in December, the event will be held in private and hardly any information has been released ahead of the event. 

“Right now, Hollywood, for the most part, is not paying attention to the Golden Globes,” Marc Malkin, Variety’s senior culture and events editor, told AFP. 

“If Hollywood isn’t recognizing these awards in any way, what kind of significance can they actually have? I don’t think much.”

The boycott looks to be a response to questionable practices by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), whose members vote on the Globes.

The group of around 100 entertainment writers with links to foreign publications had long been privately accused of various failings, including corruption and racism. This accusation was further supported by a Los Angeles Times exposé showing the HFPA had no Black members opened the floodgates last year.

So, in March 2021 more than 100 public relations firms announced they would withdraw cooperation with the Golden Globes, and a series of high-profile Hollywood figures, including Tom Cruise and Scarlett Johansson, spoke outwardly about their disapproval. 

Johansson, who, at the time had been nominated for five Golden Globes herself, urged others in the film industry to boycott the organisation unless it makes significant internal changes.

The actor recalled facing “sexist questions and remarks by certain HFPA members that bordered on sexual harassment”.

She released a statement, citing: “Unless there is necessary fundamental reform within the organization, I believe it is time that we take a step back from the HFPA and focus on the importance and strength of unity within our unions and the industry as a whole.”

And her Avengers co-star Mark Ruffalo joined her, taking to Twitter to release his own statement, entitled “change is golden”.

 “Now is the time to step up and right the wrongs of the past,” he said. “Honestly, as a recent winner of a Golden Globe, I cannot feel proud or happy about being a recipient of this award.”

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So, what now for the once all-mighty event?

Well, alongside its mainly muted version of this year’s ceremony, the HFPA have said that the event will also “discuss” the Reimagine Coalition, an initiative announced in October 2021 and set up in conjunction with civil rights group the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) to “increase diversity, equity, and inclusion across the global entertainment industry”.

We, like many others, hope that this will serve as a message to other award ceremony bodies and help to create much-needed and widespread change within the industry. 

For now though, no press will be allowed inside the ceremony, no red carpet will take place and it has yet to be announced whether the ceremony will be live-streamed.