Golden Globes Movies: No Jolie, Eastwood, Pitt, Cooper? HFPA Forges A Less Starry Path
Apparently the Hollywood Foreign Press Association is more interested in peace than war — or in superstars coming to their show. The complete shutout of Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken and Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper (both expected to be MAJOR contenders) were eye openers for the foreign based Globe voters across-the-board dismissal of these two films, set in different wars but depicting iconic true-life American heroes. Throw in another total blank for Sony’s big hope, the very fine Brad Pitt-starring World War II drama, Fury and you have a scenario where the Globes appear to be quite battle weary this season – and not a fan of major studio fare this time around. You have to give credit though to the new direction of the HFPA, under 2nd year President Theo Kingman. The group that was vilified for nominating Jolie’s and Johnny Depp’s critically maligned The Tourist just four years ago for Best Picture, Actress and Actor in their Musical/Comedy category, has turned its back on longtime favorites like Jolie, Pitt, Bradley Cooper and Eastwood – dream ratings magnets for the star heavy NBC broadcast – in favor of lesser names and smaller films. The HFPA even resisted the temptation to nominate Jolie’s Maleficent performance or Eastwood’s musical Jersey Boys in the far less crowded Comedy or Musical categories.
This is unusual since the popular media belief is that the Globes caters to superstars in order to spice up their popular kudocast, a major annual event on NBC’s broadcast schedule that has been delivering big numbers. The list of nominees released today is far more reflective of the tastes of other critics groups than an attempt to draw ratings. For Best Director there’s Wes Anderson from the March release, The Grand Budapest Hotel and not Eastwood. There’s also a female nominee but it’s Ava Duvernay for the Martin Luther King Jr. drama Selma and not the expected nod for Jolie’s stunning work on her epic war drama. Though Best Drama Actor is impossibly crowded this year, Pitt might have deserved a nod for his fierce work in Fury. Instead, the Globes went for David Oyelowo as King in Selma (a film that ironically has Pitt as an Executive Producer for his Plan B production company). And so on.