HFPA Is Taking More Hits Than An NFL Player

Pictured: "2020 Golden Globe Awards" Logo (Photo by: NBC)

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) is taking more hits than an NFL player as publicists, filmmakers, and talent call them out.

Following their recent vote to meet the publicist requirements, the HFPA only continued to get called out. This time, it was more than just the publicists. Studios like Netflix and Amazon are now getting involved. Even Avengers stars Mark Ruffalo and Scarlett Johansson have made public comments. The Black Widow star couldn’t have been more damning with her comments. Where the many publicity firms have been asking HFPA for more, Johansson goes even further according to Variety:

“As an actor promoting a film, one is expected to participate in awards season by attending press conferences as well as awards shows. In the past, this has often meant facing sexist questions and remarks by certain HFPA members that bordered on sexual harassment. It is the exact reason why I, for many years, refused to participate in their conferences,” Johansson said. “The HFPA is an organization that was legitimized by the likes of Harvey Weinstein to amass momentum for Academy recognition and the industry followed suit. 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.”

This is not the first time in which talent has brought up sexual harassment. Brendan Fraser spoke of being sexually assaulted by the former HFPA president. If you recall, said president only laughed it off. Charges like these need to be taken seriously.

Because of the ceremony airing on NBC, many people tend to view it on a similar level as the Oscars. This might have been true during their early days but a group of under 100 should not have this level of importance. Not when the diverse Critics Choice Association–of which I am a proud member–is RIGHT THERE! The CCA has north of 400 members in the movie, documentary, and TV branches.

Every time I hear someone speak about how important the Golden Globes are, a part of me cries on the inside. We cannot ignore some of their previous nomination choices in the past. Let alone the wins that came out of left field and would never happen at the Emmys or Oscars. Remember when The Tourist got a Best Comedy/Musical nomination? It’s simply unforgettable. Or how about when Sia’s critically panned Music earned a nomination in the same category? What about Emily in Paris getting a nomination over more deserving series? Just because one is getting flown out for a lavish press conference or set visit does not mean it should have any bearings on getting nominations.

One key take away right now from everything going on is the lack of exclusive HFPA press conferences going forward. This is very damning. Press conferences and junkets are so important when it comes to getting coverage for an outlet. It isn’t lost on me how many interview/junket opportunities I’ve gotten especially in April and May alone. That said, for all the compliments that I do get about my work, I do wonder if it’s because of the slots that aren’t going to HFPA members. I’m grateful for the opportunities, don’t get me wrong, but I do wonder about this because I’m getting studio opportunities that I’ve never received in previous years.

If NBC wants to continue airing the Golden Globe Awards with the same prestige, those days are gone. The HFPA is simply too tainted at this point. I do not know how any organization can recover from repeated hits. I’ve heard journalists say that they wouldn’t cover the Golden Globes if not for their employers. To my media friends, please do not be afraid to stand up and say no. It’s okay to say the word sometimes!

From where I’m sitting, it’s the two-minute warning and the HFPA is sitting on 4th-and-long on their own 20-yard line. The ball is in their possession and what happens is anyone’s guess. The best thing to do would be to just throw out the HFPA. If NBC wants a show, they can call it something else. The days of a Golden Globe Award having any kind of meaning is done. There is just too much taint when it comes to both the HFPA and Golden Globe brand.

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.