Experts predict Golden Globes will get ‘political’ in wake of diversity scandal: ‘It’s got this cloud over it’

Film critics did not have much hope in Tuesday’s Golden Globes being a must-see spectacle, citing a lackluster year of films and the potential for the ceremony to go “woke.”

“The overall quality of films in 2022 has been a massive disappointment,” film writer Chris Gore told Fox News Digital. “Hollywood used to make films for everyone, now their content seems focused on agenda rather than storytelling. It should surprise no one that the most broadly popular films of 2022, ‘Top Gun Maverick’ and ‘Avatar: The Way of Water,’ are at the top of the box office grossing over $1 billion globally each. And other popcorn blockbusters underperformed overall, most notably films coming from Disney that should have been slam dunks based on brand recognition.”

Christian Toto, editor of HollywoodinToto.com, similarly said 2022 wasn’t a stellar lineup, but one nominated film in particular stuck out to him.

“2022 wasn’t a great year for film, but I really did like ‘The Banshees of Inisherin,'” Toto offered. “It was a really dark comedy. It was bleak at times. But it was kind of beautiful too. And I didn’t know Colin Farrell could act as well as he did in that movie…I thought it was a terrific movie.”

‘TOP GUN,’ ‘THE CROWN,’ AND ‘YELLOWSTONE’ LAND GOLDEN GLOBE NOMINATIONS

FILE – Event signage appears above the red carpet at the 77th annual Golden Globe Awards, on Jan. 5, 2020, in Beverly Hills, Calif. The 78th annual Golden Globes will be held on Sunday, Feb. 18, 2021. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
(Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Toto compiles a list of his ten best films every year, but he said it’s become a “chore” as of late and that he’s had to make a lot of “compromises” because the quality of movies has just not been there. He said 2019 was the last year that featured “great films that had an impact,” naming “Joker” and “Jojo Rabbit.”

“I just feel, as a critic, I don’t get the sense that I enjoy these movies so much that I want to see them again and again,” he said. “So that’s a little bit that’s missing for me.”

But “Top Gun” and “Banshees” defied his disappointment, Toto emphasized.

Comedian Karith Foster told Fox News Digital that she was also a big fan of the “Top Gun” sequel.

“I think Tom Cruise’s ‘Maverick’ wasn’t just a box office hit, but a global favorite,” she said. “Definitely one of my favorite movies of the year. Would be cool to see it win.”

Foster added that she hoped the “talented Michelle Yeoh” gets recognized for her work in “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” and said Brendan Fraser should win Best Actor for his star turn in “The Whale.”

Gore mused that there were so many box office bombs last year because Hollywood is abandoning key demographics.

“Awards films or what some call ‘Oscar bait’ are bombing at the box office as audiences now seem trained to ‘wait for streaming,'” he said. “There was a time when Hollywood championed blue collar workers in films like ‘Norma Rae’ for which Sally Field won an Oscar. Now this demographic is either ignored or even vilified in films and television. The lesson Hollywood chooses to ignore is when you stop catering to half the audience, you will inevitably shrink the market by half. Unfortunately, the lockdowns seem to have broken Americans of the moviegoing habit.”

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 Colin Farrell attends

Colin Farrell attends “The Banshees Of Inisherin” red carpet at the 79th Venice International Film Festival on September 05, 2022, in Venice, Italy.
(Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

In addition to a supposed lack of quality movies last year, Toto noted that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s diversity scandal will also “weigh heavily” on the awards show. In February 2021, a Los Angeles Times report uncovered unethical behavior and no Black members in the HFPA. To address the exclusions, the HFPA partnered with the NAACP for the Reimagine Coalition, a five-year partnership that aims to increase diverse representation. And in October 2021, the HFPA announced that it had expanded, boasting the most diverse and largest class in its history.

Toto expected the monologue from comedian Jerrod Carmichael and several of the speeches to touch on the controversy.

“I think it’ll be super woke,” Toto said of the monologue. “He’s a funny guy. He’s got stand up chops. So he’s not a bad choice for this. But I think the prime directive for Golden Globes Central is going to be, ‘You have to address this. You have to talk about it. And I think in recent years, we’ve seen other award shows go in that direction. And it really does sap the funny way.”

“You want this to be light, maybe some references here or there, but the emphasis should be on a good time, on humor, on a celebration of movies and TV,” he continued. “And I think these shows at their best, do that. But I think we haven’t seen them at their best in quite some time.”

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“Not only will the speeches get political, but I think that the artists who are showing up are going to be – there’s going to be pressure on them to say, ‘You know, I’m here at the Golden Globes. It’s got this cloud over it. It was a diversity scandal… You can’t just kind of wipe it with a cloth and make it all go away. So I think some of their speeches may reflect that,” Toto added.

Ricky Gervais provided his two cents on whether or not he would host the Golden Globes again.

Ricky Gervais provided his two cents on whether or not he would host the Golden Globes again.
(Paul Drinkwater/NBCUniversal Media, LLC via Getty Images)

“I hope HFPA is doing more than just putting ‘faces’ of diversity up to show they’ve learned their lesson,” Foster told Fox News Digital. “It’s a global award show it should be diverse throughout not just for optics but because ITS A GLOBAL AWARDS SHOW and having different people with differing opinions and experiences who haven’t been bribed would offer it more legitimacy.”

Toto said he missed the days of “old school entertainment” like in the string of years Billy Crystal hosted the Oscars, when the jokes were largely apolitical.

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As for the awards themselves, Toto predicted the Best Movie race would come down to “Tár” starring Cate Blanchett and, “The Fabelmans” from director Steven Spielberg, both awards season favorites.

Gore said he was eager to see if the Indian Telugu-language action drama “RRR” will have a breakthrough Tuesday, throwing in a brief Oscar prediction too.

“One of America’s most beloved exports, entertainment, continues to lose ground globally as films like the Indian cinematic achievement RRR finds a wider audience,” Gore said. “As for any Golden Globes predictions, it will be interesting to see if films like RRR can break through. I do expect most of the winners to be films that have a more broad and global appeal. As for the Oscars, I have one prediction I make every year that always comes true – the Oscars will be boring.”

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