Perhaps we should refer to them as the Golden Effin’ Globes. NBC’s censors were busy Tuesday night as freewheeling Golden Globes presenters, winners and even host Jerrod Carmichael threw out what felt like a record number of expletives for a live awards show.
“I believe we caught them all,” an exec told Variety after the show. (Perhaps they should have offered an uncensored version on Peacock.) Opening the Globes to a loud crowd in the Beverly Hills Hilton ballroom (which is generally the norm for this particular awards show, as audience members freely stroll table to table, as well as to the bar and back), Carmichael said, “I didn’t think I’d be spending this much time telling you to shut the fuck up!”
As a presenter, Jennifer Coolidge (“The White Lotus”) gave a humorous and well-received monologue, at one point promising that “I’m not lying about this shit.” Later, presenter Nicole Byer declared, “let’s fucking do it!” as she opened the winner envelope.
In his acceptance speech, Jeremy Allen White (“The Bear”) uttered “shit” but managed to catch himself before almost also saying “fuck.” Back on stage to accept her Globe as supporting actress in a limited series/anthology, Coolidge did let loose a “fuck.” So did musical or comedy film actor winner Colin Farrell (“The Banshees of Inisherin”), who noted the movie’s donkey had developed a philosophy about Hollywood: “Fuck this film business!”
And then Eddie Murphy brought down the house at the end of his Cecil B. DeMille award acceptance speech, offering up advice that included, “Keep Will Smith’s wife’s name out your fucking mouth!” It got one of the night’s biggest laughs from the audience, perhaps because the rest of Murphy’s speech had been a rather subdued, quiet-voiced list of thank yous before he raised his voice to deliver that final gag.
If you were watching the live NBC broadcast, you may have missed those moments as those FCC-unfriendly words were uttered. Variety was in the ballroom to chronicle what else you may not have seen on TV, as well as some inside scoop on a few things you might not have known about this year’s 80th Golden Globes. Read on:
• Mystery monologue: Hollywood Foreign Press Association members, Dick Clark Prods. producers and NBC execs were likely on the edge of their seats as Carmichael opened the show and immediately went hard on the HFPA. That’s because no one but Carmichael himself knew what he would say that night on live TV. During rehearsals, Carmichael practiced his stage presence, but never revealed what was in his monologue. In his brutally honest opener, Carmichael riffed on why he was chosen to be host (“I’m here because I’m Black”) and why he accepted the gig. He even name checked HFPA president Helen Hoehne, while referencing the scandals the org has faced in the past two years, leading to last year’s televised hiatus. But just as he took on the HFPA, he then turned it around and ended his monologue by noting he was there to celebrate Hollywood talent, much to the relief of all involved. And now, Globes producers believe they may have gotten over the hump of having to further address the controversy.
• Whither weather: The actor in a TV drama category was originally scheduled to be the fourth award of the night. But the evening’s original rundown had to be in flux due in part to the unpredictable weather in Los Angeles. As originally planned, nominees “The Old Man” star Jeff Bridges and “Yellowstone” star Kevin Costner were supposed to attend (and were even slated to be seated at the same table). But both were up in the Santa Barbara area, and with the 101 freeway closed due to the rain, they couldn’t get down to Los Angeles in time for the ceremony. For a moment, it looked like Bridges might be able to travel via plane, as the Santa Barbara airport had briefly reopened – but then it closed again, preventing him from arriving after all. The category was pushed into later in the show just in case, but it was for naught – Costner, who eventually won, wasn’t there. “Nobody’s sadder than us that we couldn’t be there at the Golden Globes,” Costner said in a video he posted on Instagram.
• Early birds: Jamie Lee Curtis was among the first to arrive inside the ballroom — along with Eddie Redmayne and Glen Powell —as they were serving the main course (salmon and salad; most celebrities get to the Globes later, and just drink). Curtis patted a waiter’s back who served her water, and her table was close to the stage — a good sign for the cast of “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” which won two awards (for best musical or comedy film actress Michelle Yeoh and musical or comedy supporting actor Ke Huy Quan).
• Nip/Tuck: Even one of TV’s most prolific producers can still get nervous. Carol Burnett Award honoree Ryan Murphy told Variety before the show that he had a few butterflies about giving his speech, which he said producers asked to be pared down by two minutes. Murphy focused his talk on some of the cast members of his shows that he had proudly watched grow in stature and recognition in recent years, including “Pose” stars Billy Porter and Michaela Jaé Rodriguez.
• Drink please? Paul Dano was one of the first actors to make a beeline for the bar during a commercial break. Margot Robbie snacked on a plate of veggies. But the outdoor smoking patio, a favorite place for A-list celebrities to gather and gossip during the show, remained mostly empty this year.
• Party table: The cast of “Abbott Elementary” was in celebration mode throughout the night, as the show won best supporting actor in a comedy or drama (Tyler James Williams), comedy actress (Quinta Brunson) and ultimately the top comedy series prize. After Brunson returned with her award, the table was cheering and glasses were clinking. When Williams won his Globe (one of the nice surprises of the night), Eddie Murphy stood up and cheered. And perhaps the ultimate sign the “Abbott” table was the place to be? It was where Craig Erwich – who as president of ABC Entertainment, Hulu & Disney Branded Television Streaming Originals, had plenty of options — decided to sit. Other celebratory tables included the one for India’s “RRR,” which made history when the film’s “Naatu Naatu” was named best original song. (Composer MM Keeravani accepted the Globe.) During commercial break, the “RRR” folks were seen frantically sharing the news with others via phone while continuing to celebrate.
• Two of a kind: Among the talent conversing with one another, a seated Rihanna was spotted chatting with “Wakanda Forever” director Ryan Coogler between commercial breaks. “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” collaborators Brad Putt and Quentin Tarantino were hugging and catching up before the show began. Selena Gomez brought her younger sister as her date. Power writer/producers Dan Fogelman (“Only Murders in the Building”) and Liz Meriwether (“The Dropout”) were seen trading notes. Regina Hall (“The Best Man: The Final Chapters”) and Adam Scott (“Severance”) met for the first time at the afterparty.
• Crowd control: As mentioned before, the Globes audience is often so loud chatting amongst itself that people in the ballroom miss (or can’t hear) what’s happening on stage. But there are still moments that elicit big reactions. And this year, there was no bigger response than to Coolidge’s acceptance speech – which earned her a standing ovation from those in attendance. People continued to stand for Coolidge long after the telecast went to commercial. Also getting big applause was Ukraine leader Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who had pre-taped a piece for the ceremony. When Zelenskyy declared that it was “already clear who will win,” the audience erupted in cheers. Then there was the moment when everyone thought Tracy Morgan was about to introduce Eddie Murphy, and they began to stand – only to realize Morgan was introducing Curtis in order to then give Murphy is Cecil B. DeMille award.
• It’s a Living: Among the most popular sightings at the Globes afterparty was “Abbott Elementary” star Sheryl Lee Ralph. As Ralph patiently waited, a line of fans asking to take a selfie continued to grow.
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