Award show anticipation

With the new year just beginning, it is time to get ready and celebrate the best of the entertainment industry. Here is what to expect (and some of what has already happened) on entertainment’s biggest nights — award show ceremonies. – J. Simms

Jessica Simms, Arts & Life Editor

Golden Globes– Jan 5 

The 77th annual Golden Globes, an award show that honors the best in television and film, was held on Jan. 5, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles. For the fifth time, comedian and actor, Ricky Gervais, hosted the Golden Globes, but immediately announced at the ceremony that this year was his last year hosting. 

Unlike other award shows, such as the peer-recognized Emmy Awards and the Academy Awards, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), which is a non-profit that is made up of international journalists that cover the entertainment industry, runs and votes on the Golden Globes. 

As the first to announce its nominees, the Golden Globes helped to offer a glimpse as to what may happen this awards season.

For some, a big disappointment in the Golden Globes nominees occurred in the “Best Director” and the “Best Screenplay of a Motion Picture” categories, since all nominees were male, despite there being women-directed movies that had positive reviews, such as “Hustlers,” “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” “Little Women” and “Harriet.” 

There were some moments that stood out among the rest at this year’s Golden Globes, with a big one occurring when the film, “Parasite,” won “Best Foreign Film.” The director, Bong Joon-Ho, while he accepted the award, called out Hollywood for its aversion to foreign-language films. 

The Golden Globes has a rule that requires movies to have a minimum of 50% of their dialogue be in English to qualify for the categories of “Best Picture, Comedy” and “Best Picture, Drama,” which means that some well-reviewed films including “Parasite” were ineligible for these honors. 

“Once you overcome the one-inch barriers of subtitles, you will be introduced to so many amazing films,” he said through a translator. 

A positive moment during the 77th Golden Globes was Kate McKinnon’s tribute to Ellen DeGeneres when she was presented with the “Carol Burnett Award for Achievement in Television.”

“When Ellen’s show premiered in 1997, I was lifting weights in my mother’s basement and I thinking to myself ‘Am I gay?’ And I was. And I am,” McKinnon said while praising DeGeneres’ decision to come out, ultimately paving the way for her and other gay actors in Hollywood. 

BAFTA (British Academy Film Awards)– Feb 2

The 73rd British Academy of Film and Television Arts Awards (BAFTA Awards) will be hosted by comedian and talk show host Graham Norton on Feb. 2 at London’s Royal Albert Hall. Even though there’s still a few weeks until the ceremony, nominees were announced on Jan. 7. 

The BAFTA Awards are hosted by the British film organization of the same name, recognizing this year’s movies with industry voters tending to want to focus on British-made projects.  There are a total of 23 film awards presented at the BAFTAs, with there being a separate ceremony in the spring to honor television shows.  

The BAFTA awards have been criticized for a lack of representation after there were no non-white actors nominated and no women nominated in the “Best Director” category for the seventh year in a row. Over the decade, only about 5% of BAFTA nominees for “Best Actor,” “Best Actress,” “Best Supporting Actor” and “Best Supporting Actress” were non-white. 

Steve McQueen, a director who has won two BAFTAs in the past for his debut film, “Hunger” in 2009 and for “12 Years a Slave” in 2012, has said that the BAFTA risks becoming irrelevant if it continues showing a lack of diversity in principal categories. 

“After a while you get a bit fed up with it,” McQueen said to The Guardian. “Because if the BAFTAs are not supporting British talent, if you’re not supporting the people who are making headway in the industry, then I don’t understand what you are there for.” 

For the 2020 BAFTA awards, “Joker” is leading the film nominations with a total of 11, with one of the nominees being for Joaquin Phoenix who is nominated for “Best Actor” for his starring role. Other films with many nominations are “The Irishman” and “Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood.” 

Grammy Awards– Jan 26 

For Lizzo, Billie Eilish and Lil Nas X fans, the 62nd annual Grammy Awards will be a big night. Lizzo stands atop the nominees list, with a total of eight and Eilish and Nas X each having six apiece.

This year’s Grammy Awards will take place at Los Angeles’ Staples Center on Jan. 26, and will be hosted by Alicia Keys for the second year in a row.

“It’s almost like a marathon: you can’t just run a marathon (once),” Keys said about wanting to host the Grammys for a second time. “I feel like now, more than ever, I’m familiar with the space on  multiple levels. It’s going to be an exciting, inclusive, beautiful experience and that’s what I want to create.”

Last year, Keys was postively reviewed for her hosting style, which included her bringing women, such as Michelle Obama and Lady Gaga to the stage to show off their skils.

By hosting again this year, this makes Keys the third woman to host the Grammy Awards more than once, following Ellen DeGeneres and Rosie O’Donnell. Keys is the fifth woman in the Grammy Award history to host.

Alongside their many Grammy nominations, both Lizzo and Eilish will be making their Grammy stage debuts as part of this year’s performance lineup. Demi Lovato will also be performing, making this her first live performance since being hospitalized in 2018. Another returner is Ariana Grande who returns after not attending last year’s show following a dispute with the Grammy’s producer Ken Ehrlich.

In response to criticism that the Grammy Awards has received due to lack of diversity among the nominees and winners in years past, the Recording Academy, which is a group of music industry professionals that decide the Grammy winners, has invited 900 members to join the voting body, particularly looking for women, people of color and those who are under the age of 39.

The Friday before the official Grammy Awards ceremony, Aerosmith will be honored as the “2020 Person of the Year for MusiCares,” which is the Recording Academy’s charity for musicians in financial need. Aerosmith has earned this title for its philanthropy and overall impact on music history.

Aerosmith will be honored with a tribute concert that features artists Alice Cooper, Foo Fighters, Gary Clark Jr, H.E.R, the Jonas Brothers, John Legend, John Mayer, Emily King and Yola.

Academy Awards (Oscars) — Feb 9 

The 92nd annual Academy Awards will be airing live on ABC on Feb. 9, with it being unclear whether a host will be running the show. Last year, Kevin Hart was removed as the host after offensive comments he made resurfaced on social media. Despite there being no host, critics and ABC entertainment executive, Karey Burke, were surprised at how smooth the broadcast was.

 “We’re extremely proud of how the show turned out creatively and how well it performed this (last) year, so I think you will see us not messing with that formula to the best of our abilities,” Burke said to The Wrap. 

Oscar nominees were announced on Jan. 13 which sparked a lot of controversy due to issues of representation. The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, which is made up of film industry professionals, votes on the nominees and the winners. The Academy set a goal in 2016 of doubling the number of diverse members by 2020, following outrage over a lack of nominees who were female or people of color. Even though representation in the Academy has improved, this year’s list of Oscar nominees shows that the issues of diversity persist. 

Only two of the 20 actors and actresses nominated this year were people of color and no female directors were among the nominees. Of the nine movies nominated for “Best Picture,” “Parasite,” a South Korean film that featured a predominantly nonwhite cast  and “Little Women” that centered around many female characters, were the only two films that were diverse nominees. 

“There are signs of remarkable progress behind the camera,” Stacy Smith, a professor at USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, said. “But, I think the (Academy Award) nominations really represent major steps backward when the rest of the industry is working diligently to move in the direction that reflects the audience.” 

While the Academy in its entirety will vote on who will win the Oscar in each category, only the branches nominate for their categories. These branches are actors, directors and screenwriters.

Even though many diverse films have not been nominated for Oscars, it does not mean they are not doing well in box offices. Jon Chu’s “Crazy Rich Asians” became the highest-grossing romantic comedy from a major Hollywood studio within a decade. 

“Do we need to make more movies with diverse stars as well as directors? The answer is yes,” Rolando Rodriguez, CEO of Marcus Theaters, said. “There’s no question these movies do extremely well.”