The fallout over the Hollywood Foreign Press Associations’ (HFPA) alleged lack of ethics reached a nadir this week when NBC announced that it will not air the Golden Globe Awards next year.
In a statement, the network said that the “magnitude” of diversity and ethical changes takes too much time and work to be handled in under a year, and the network will thus forgo airing the awards in 2022.
“We continue to believe that the HFPA is committed to meaningful reform,” NBC said in a statement. “However, change of this magnitude takes time and work, and we feel strongly that the HFPA needs time to do it right. As such, NBC will not air the 2022 Golden Globes. Assuming the organization executes on its plan, we are hopeful we will be in a position to air the show in January 2023.”
In February, the Los Angeles Times reported that the HFPA, which consists of only 87 members of international journalists, conducts itself like a cabal that bars qualified applicants from entry:
Over its nearly eight-decade history, the HFPA has weathered a string of embarrassing scandals, lawsuits and often blistering criticism of its membership. The group has been the butt of jokes even from the stage of its own awards show. Hosting in 2016, Ricky Gervais dismissed the Globes as ‘worthless,’ calling the award ‘a bit of metal that some nice old confused journalists wanted to give you in person so they could meet you and have a selfie with you.’ In a 2014 interview, actor Gary Oldman said the group was ’90 nobodies having a wank’ and called for a boycott of the ‘silly game’ their awards represent.
Interviews with more than 50 people — including studio publicists, entertainment executives and seven current and former members — as well as court filings and internal financial documents and communications, paint a picture of an embattled organization still struggling to shake its reputation as a group whose awards or nominations can be influenced with expensive junkets and publicity swag.
Last week, the HFPA released a series of guidelines while pledging to reform its ranks by adding more people of color. Time’s Up president Tina Tchen denounced the reforms as little more than “window-dressing.”
“The window-dressing platitudes adopted yesterday are neither the transformation that was promised nor what our creative community deserves,” Tchen said. “Any organization or sponsors that set themselves up to pass judgment on our vibrant community of creators and talent must do better.”
According to Deadline, actor Tom Cruise will reportedly be returning his three career Golden Globes back to the HFPA in protest.
“The trophies just sent to HFPA headquarters are the Best Actor prize he won for Jerry Maguire, the Best Actor prize he won for Born on the Fourth of July and the Best Supporting Actor prize he won for Magnolia,” reported the outlet. “This is a new tack, but I wouldn’t be surprised if others follow his lead and that the reception area of the HFPA could be crammed with golden trophies.”