It was a night of celebration, a few surprises, laughter, heartfelt speeches and a few serious, even somber moments as Hollywood marked the opening of the Awards Season with the 72nd Golden Globes ceremony held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills.
Thunderous applause greeted Amy Poehler and Tina Fey as they took the stage for the third time and immediately warmed the room by ribbing Cecil B DeMille recipient George Clooney. “George Clooney married Amal Alamuddin this year.” Said the presenters, “Amal is a human rights lawyer who worked on the Enron case, was an adviser to Kofi Annan regarding Syria, and was selected for a three-person U.N. commission investigating rules of war violations in the Gaza Strip. So tonight, her husband is getting a lifetime achievement award.” The irony was graciously acknowledged by the award recipient, smiling from the floor.
When Clooney finally did take the stage to receive his prize, greeted by a standing ovation, he was equally humble addressing both nominees and winners in the crowd by saying: “If you are in this room you caught the brass ring”. Clooney acknowledged some of his predecessors like Lauren Bacall and Robin Williams – both of whom passed away last year and then struck a more heartfelt tone. “It is a humbling thing to find someone to love”, he said addressing his new bride Amal Alamuddin. “I am proud to be your husband” said Hollywood’s previously most eligible bachelor.
Clooney concluded on a somber note. “Millions of people marched today in Paris and around the world”, said the actor-director-producer known for his social and political activism, “we will not live in fear”. It was just one of the references to the tragic terrorist attacks of the past week that killed 17 people in Paris including 10 journalists at the satirical publication Charlie Hebdo. Clooney’s message was echoed by Hollywood Foreign Press Association president Theo Kingma in his address when he said “The freedom of artistic expression … is a beacon across the globe … We stand united everywhere from North Korea to Paris”. Many other guests such as Amy Adams, Alexandre Desplat, Tchecky Karyo and Helen Mirren also expressed solidarity with the victims sporting “Je Suis Charlie” buttons and generally conveying Hollywood’s support of free artistic expression.
And tonight Hollywood did it the best way it knows: By distributing Golden Globes to the best films and television series of the year. In the first department Boyhood led the pack with three wins: Best Drama, Best Director for Richard Linklater and Best Supporting Actress for Patricia Arquette. Another favorite, Birdman took the awards for Best Screenplay and Best Actor for Michael Keaton and his tour-de-force lead performance as washed up actor Riggan Thompson. In somewhat of an upset it could not, however, best Wes Anderson’s whimsical The Grand Budapest Hotel which was named Best Comedy or Musical.
In the other acting categories it was a golden night for Eddie Redmayne, a winner as Best Actor Drama for his characterization of Steven Hawking in The Theory of Everything (the film also won for Best Musical Score). Return nominee Amy Adams won the Globe for Best Actress Comedy or Musical for Big Eyes and J.K. Simmons won his first Globe for portraying a fierce music teacher in Whiplash. How To Train Your Dragon 2 was the winner in the animation category while Leviathan was named Best Foreign Film of 2015. Best Original Song went to Selma’s Glory by John Legend and Common.
The 72nd Globe proved historic for newcomer Amazon Studios that scored two Globes forTransparent (Best Comedy Series and Jeffrey Tambor for lead actor). FX’s Fargo also scored big with wins as Best Miniseries and for Best Supporting Actor (Billy Bob Thornton). Another double winner was Showtime’s newcomer The Affair that won Best Drama Series and for Ruth Wilson as Best Actress – Drama. Kevin Spacey won for his portrayal of ruthless VP (and now president elect) Francis Underwood in Netflix’s House of Cards. One of the most emotional speeches was delivered by newcomer Gina Rodriguez for her win as Best Comedy Actress in the breakout series Jane The Virgin. Wins for Best Drama Actress (Maggie Gyllenhall in The Honourable Woman) and Supporting Actor in The Normal Hearti> (Matt Bomer) and Downton Abbey (Joan Froggatt) rounded out the field.
All in all a great night that had space, among other things, for Tina and Amy’s salute to “the new HFPA member from North Korea” – with an uncanny resemblance to comedienne Margaret Cho and the notorious propensity of asking stars to pose with her publication.
Best Motion Picture – Drama
Lead Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama
Winner: Eddie Redmayne – The Theory of Everything
Lead Actress in a Motion Picture- Drama
Winner: Julianne Moore – Still Alice
Best Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical
Winner: The Grand Budapest Hotel
Lead Actor in a Motion Picture- Comedy or Musical
Winner: Michael Keaton – Birdman
Lead Actress – TV Drama
Winner: Ruth Wilson – The Affair
Winner: Richard Linklater – Boyhood
Lead Actor – TV Drama
Winner: Kevin Spacey – House of Cards
Best TV Drama
Winner: The Affair
Actress – TV Miniseries or Movie
Winner: Maggie Gyllenhaal – The Honorable Woman
Winner: Leviathan, Russia
Lead Actor – TV Comedy
Winner: Jeffrey Tambor – Transparent
Winner: Alejandro G. Inarritu, Nicolas Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Armando Bo – Birdman
Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture
Winner: Patricia Arquette – Boyhood
Winner: How to Train Your Dragon 2
Lead Actress in a Motion Picture- Comedy or Musical
Winner: Amy Adams – Big Eyes
Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries, or TV movie
Winner: Matt Bomer – The Normal Heart
Original Song – Motion Picture
Winner: Glory – Selma (John Legend, Common)
Original Score – Motion Picture
Winner: Johann Johannsson – The Theory of Everything
Best TV Comedy or Musical
Lead Actress – TV Comedy or Musical
Winner: Gina Rodriguez – Jane the Virgin
Actor – TV Miniseries or Movie
Winner: Billy Bob Thornton – Fargo
TV Miniseries or Movie
Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries, or TV movie
Winner: Joanne Froggatt – Downton Abbey
Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture
Winner: J.K. Simmons – Whiplash