Colin Farrell and Michelle Yeoh honored at Golden Globes in search of redemption

The Golden Globes made their big return to television on Tuesday, rewarding big names like Irish actor Colin Farrell and Malaysian Michelle Yeoh, who were present in the room alongside many heavyweights, despite the scandals that have tarnished the image of these awards.

This laid-back, glitzy event, long considered Hollywood’s favorite night out, has been a shadow of its former self for the past two years.

The fault first of the pandemic, then of accusations of racism, sexism and corruption aimed at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), which forms the jury and which had no black members in 2021.

Shunned by the gratin and deprived of television last year, the Golden Globes are back on NBC. The American channel agreed to broadcast the 80th edition, after a series of reforms of the HFPA to improve its diversity and prohibit its members from accepting gifts from the studios.

Unlike the Oscars, the Golden Globes split their awards between drama and comedy.

Austin Butler won Best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama for his brilliant portrayal of rock ‘n’ roll legend Elvis Presley in the biopic “Elvis.”

“You were an icon and a rebel, and I love you so much,” the American actor said, addressing the late singer directly in an emotional speech.

On the comedy side, the Irishman Collin Farrell was crowned best actor for his role in “The Banshees of Inisherin”, a tragicomedy in which he plays an islander disoriented by the abrupt end of his friendship with a longtime friend, who does not want no longer speak to him.

Michelle Yeoh was voted best actress for her portrayal of a laundromat owner immersed in parallel universes in “Everything Everywhere All At Once”. The film also earned Vietnamese actor Ke Huy Quan, who plays her husband, a Best Supporting Actor award.

Cate Blanchett won Best Actress in a Drama for her role in “Tar,” where she plays a ruthless conductor at the top of her game and whose life is falling apart.

– Big names present –

Despite the controversy, many Hollywood heavyweights responded on Tuesday evening: Steven Spielberg, winner of the best director for his intimate and semi-autobiographical feature film “The Fabelmans”, James Cameron nominated for the second part of “Avatar “, or even Guillermo del Toro, who won the award for best animated film for his “Pinocchio”, all walked the red carpet.

The carpet of honor for the Golden Globes, January 10, 2023 near Los Angeles (AFP – Frederic J. Brown)

The ceremony did not escape a few spades from its presenter, the African-American comedian Jerrod Carmichael. He opened the evening by deriding the accusations of racism, sexism and corruption against the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), which presents these awards.

“I’ll tell you why I’m here. I’m here because I’m black,” he said, calling himself “the black face of a beleaguered white organization.”

“I’m not going to say it’s a racist organization, but they didn’t have a single black member until George Floyd died. So do what you want with that information,” he added. .

The ceremony, which must deal with absent marks, such as the producer of “Top Gun: Maverick” Tom Cruise who returned his three Golden Globes in 2021, is also not as sumptuous as usual. Most after-parties usually won’t take place.

In the face of controversy, the producer of “Avatar: the way of the water” defended the return to grace of the Golden Globes.

“I think the HFPA reacted to the criticism aimed at it and acted,” Jon Landau told AFP, praising the organization for its reforms.

– Prestige at stake –

Faced with controversy, the HFPA notably renewed the Golden Globes jury, including 103 new entrants – who are not full members of the association – including many women and people from ethnic minorities.

American actor Austin Butler receives his Golden Globes, January 10, 2023 near Los Angeles, for his title role in the biopic
American actor Austin Butler receives his Golden Globes on January 10, 2023 near Los Angeles, for his title role in the biopic “Elvis” (AFP – Frederic J. Brown)

After recent controversies, the prestige of these awards is at stake.

In the past, a success at the Golden Globes was a valuable marketing tool, capable of launching a winning campaign towards the supreme reward of the Oscars.

But if the film posters again highlight the nominations for the Golden Globes, unlike last year, their power of influence seems to be permanently diminished.

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