Sunday, July 14, 2024

Analyzing What The Golden Globes Nominations Might Look Like

It’s tough to let go of traditions when they’ve been embedded into entertainment culture for so long. There was a moment in time when we wondered if the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, after years of bribery, lack of inclusion, and generally wacky nomination history, would finally fold after both damning reports of their membership came to light during the early pandemic era and NBC briefly cutting ties for broadcasting the event. In the year between, the 79th Golden Globes were held on January 9th, 2022, through the fairly-maligned method of a press conference with no nominees in attendance and delayed Twitter posts. However, after a review of the HFPA’s new and improved membership status and attempts to clean its image, the television network has changed their minds and agreed to air the 80th Golden Globe Awards on January 10th, 2023, with nominations scheduled to be announced on December 12th, 2022. 

With the televised ceremony returning to its roots and hoping its audience can remain as it once was, and at double the membership it had prior, one wonders if this ceremony can ever be enjoyable again or as important to the eventual Oscar contenders as it had always been touted as being. As a televised award show, they were an excuse for celebrities to sit at tables and get drunk live on camera, which to some of us, was the only reason to tune in. But as awards themselves, the Golden Globes were usually always the first televised awards show out of the gate. Despite their different voting body, they established a mood going forward regarding what films were ahead in the awards race.


When judging the Globe’s view on the 2022 film output, it’s important to narrow down on what few films they will shower more with love than others. Sure, the voting block has improved its diversity. Still, outside of a couple of surprise nominations last year for individuals like Maggie Gyllenhaal in Best Director for “The Lost Daughter,” the voting results didn’t seem to favor any film that didn’t stand a chance at Oscars in the first place. This isn’t the type of new voting results like we saw with the BAFTAs; it just prevents the possibility of voter manipulation by a smidge. You’re not as likely to see nominations like Halle Berry for “Frankie & Alice” (2010) or “Music” (2020) and “The Tourist” (2010) in Best Motion Picture- Comedy/Musical. Sure, you’ll still get the occasional divisively-reviewed contender like “Don’t Look Up” (2021), but perhaps like that film, it proves to be an awards mainstay the entire season.

One specific film that will definitely be all over the nomination list is Baz Luhrmann’s “Elvis.” Whether or not we see this film make it all the way to a Best Picture nomination at the Oscars, the campaign starts here. This glitzy, chaotic, show-stopping smorgasbord of production design, musical performances, and a magnetic lead performance of a true-life individual seems to be a more-agreeable version of “Bohemian Rhapsody” (2018), previous winner of both Best Actor in a Motion Picture-Drama for Rami Malek and Best Motion Picture-Drama. While it has a tough hill to climb (the hill being Mount Fabelmans), be sure that the Golden Globes will find a way to fit this in every category they can (Picture, Director, Actor, Supporting Actor, and Song). It is the year’s biggest original hit, and Warner Bros’ biggest contender will catapult “Elvis” as a threat to the nomination leader. 

Without a doubt, Steven Spielberg’s “The Fabelmans” will be a top contender, as it is to be at this year’s Academy Awards. The biggest question mark about the film’s awards chances will be whether or not its two supporting men can squeeze into the same category. Since its premiere, much of the standout praise was given towards Judd Hirsch, who, as the lead character Sammy’s grandfather Boris, gives a thunderous monologue that has left the film’s audience applauding at many screenings. However, in a more subdued but significant role, Paul Dano has been given quieter (but still substantial) praise as Sammy’s father. Burt, an archetype of Spielberg’s father, whose imprint has been felt in most of the filmmaker’s work, is the role that has pushed Dano towards his closest chance yet at an Oscar nomination after starring in three Best Picture nominations to date and receiving a Golden Globe nomination for his work in 2015’s “Love and Mercy” in the same Supporting Actor category. Hirsch has been nominated for both a Globe and an Oscar in the past for his work in 1980’s “Ordinary People,” but is his limited screen time enough to justify a nomination? From Tom Cruise in “Tropic Thunder” (2008) to Jane Fonda in “Youth” (2015), the Globes aren’t strangers to nominating bit-sized performances, or double-nominating for that matter, but we won’t know for sure what fate lies ahead for these two right away. It’s possible that both could contend here and at the Critics Choice Awards, only for one to be blanked everywhere else, as we saw with Ciaran Hinds and Jamie Dornan in last year’s “Belfast” (2021).

With the category split into two genres, it does leave room for the Golden Globes to give love in either category to a film that eventually will not make the Oscar ten, though, with a concrete ten, the chances are slimmer. As shown with 2015’s “Mad Max: Fury Road,” 2018’s “Black Panther,” and 2021’s “Dune,” the Globes are not shy with nominating a prestigious blockbuster in their Drama category, even if it means it only collects one, two, or three nominations total, usually in music, rarely in acting. “Top Gun: Maverick” is this year’s big blockbuster awards juggernaut, guaranteed to crush the technical categories at the Academy Awards in areas that the Golden Globes do not nominate. Outside of Best Original Song and a possible Best Actor in a Motion Picture- Drama nomination for Tom Cruise (who returned his awards in protest- more on that in a bit), “Top Gun: Maverick” stands little chance to win but has what it takes to be a certified Drama nominee. Its biggest competition is the upcoming “Avatar: The Way of Water.” The original “Avatar” (2009) dominated the 67th Golden Globes, winning Best Picture- Drama and Best Director, and while some are still doubtful as to whether “Avatar: The Way of Water” will be the exact same awards monster that the first film was, the early positive reactions to the film suggest it could be just as big. Even if it is a critical and commercial success, an argument for rewarding the franchise a second time (a rarity unless you’re “The Lord of the Rings“) is yet to be given until official reviews drop. Its chances, if any, are in Picture/Director/Song/Score and nothing else. But as they say, never doubt James Cameron.

Regarding less populist fair, the Globes aren’t strangers to nominating more serious, understated work. Even films that are “cold” in nature struggle at the end of the season to gain Academy support. Movies like “Little Children” (2006), “Eastern Promises” (2007), “Foxcatcher” (2014), “Carol” (2015), and “If Beale Street Could Talk” (2018). “Little Children” and “In the Bedroom” (2001) were both Drama nominees, giving no excuse for Field’s most praised work to date, “TÁR” (2022), to not stand a chance at another Motion Picture-Drama nomination. While Field will struggle in Best Director here more than with the Academy’s director branch, he has yet to be nominated here, and perhaps this is finally the time.

With films that may struggle outside of a few categories (that may stand a better chance with the Academy), including “She Said,” “The Whale,” “The Inspection,” and “Living,” will mainly be aiming at the more-open acting categories. Carey Mulligan starts her campaign here with her role as reporter Megan Twohey in “She Said,” as does Bill Nighy’s career-best work in Sony Pictures Classics’ best contender, “Living.” SPC has a habit of not pushing their contenders until the last minute. This strategy has paid off for them many times with the Academy in the past but little anywhere else, which puts “Living” as a contender here for Nighy and Nighy only. The release date swap and pitiful reception to “The Son” leaves that film as a DOA contender. Brendan Fraser, like Tom Cruise, has been vocal in his disapproval of the HFPA after sexual harassment claims toward the branch for a sexual harassment incident in 2003. The Globes, like most awards bodies this year, are still expected to nominate Fraser for his towering work in the divisive film, but he is not expected to attend, which could sour some members. Jeremy Pope’s career-boosting work in “The Inspection,” with an open-enough category like Best Actor in a Drama, should not be underestimated, and neither should Adam Sandler’s well-received work in the Netflix basketball movie “Hustle.”

And finally, we come down to our more controversial options. Ana De Armas’ performance in Andrew Dominik’s “Blonde” seemed to be the only element of that film that made it through its critical bashing primarily unscathed. The NC-17 film is almost guaranteed to be a no-show at the Oscars, but the Globes have gone for this type of performance before. A Globe may be the only piece of recognition De Armas (former nominee for “Knives Out,” a better film and a weaker category of Best Actress- Comedy/Musical) can achieve this year for her showy and brave portrayal of Marilyn Monroe. But she’s up against both Viola Davis in “The Woman King” (a critical and commercial hit), awards darling Olivia Colman for “Empire of Light,” and Jennifer Lawrence’s subtly powerful work in “Causeway.” She may be able to squeak Colman out due to “Empire of Light’s” less-than-luminous response, but there’s no beating Davis. Lawrence herself is also a Golden Globes favorite, winning three times out of five nominations and having just been nominated last year for “Don’t Look Up.” One also questions if the branch can make it through “Blonde,” which has a 165-minute endurance test of a runtime. 

The other questionable contender this year is Will Smith in Apple’s “Emancipation,” directed by Antoine Fuqua. Reviews have been mixed, but Smith is indeed a contender. Oscar slap or not (and it’s been discussed to death), the Globes may be eager to begin the forgiveness train for Smith. They nominated him for past work “Concussion” (2015), “The Pursuit of Happyness” (2006), “Ali” (2001), his television work on “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air,” and he won last year for “King Richard” (pre-Oscars slap). One nomination here could be a domino effect for Smith, who still can contend for a nomination at the Academy Awards, though he cannot attend.


In typical Golden Globes fashion, there is more room for absurdity in the Comedy/Musical categories, even if their new voting body plans on voting “more seriously.” One inevitable thing is that “Everything Everywhere All At Once” will receive nominations nearly everywhere (with Director and Song being the least-guaranteed places). Previous nominee Jamie Lee Curtis has jumped ahead of the film’s more obvious MVP Stephanie Hsu in the Supporting Actress race. Michelle Yeoh and Ke Huy Quan are destined to win their respective categories. Its biggest competition will be Martin McDonaugh’s “The Banshees of Inisherin,” with Colin Farrell guaranteed to nab Best Actor in a Comedy/Musical. As with “The Fabelmans,” it has two Supporting Actor contenders, but one is clearly ahead of the other this time. Previous nominee Brendan Gleeson is nearly a lock to finally achieve his career recognition for his stoic but layered performance, whereas Barry Keoghan’s brashly talkative yet sensitive Dominic may stand a better shot with Academy voters than the HFPA. “Babylon,” like “The Wolf of Wall Street” (2013) and “The Greatest Showman” (2017) before it, is exactly the big, loud, and proud contender that the Globes love in this category, regardless of its critical reception. “Babylon” could be liked enough by critics and audiences like “The Wolf of Wall Street” was or be a critical dud and commercial hit like “The Greatest Showman,” or it could be neither like “Nine” (2009). The HFPA is always eager to award a late-in-the-year, un-reviewed, star vehicle such as “Babylon” that, whether or not it crashes and burns by the time of the Oscars, feels like it has the juice either way. Damien Chazelle’s three-hour monster of a film is not expected to be a financial hit, but it will have a slew of nominations under its belt before the opening weekend even begins. 

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” (2022) is one of four secured choices for a Best Comedy/Musical nomination. Its limited box office is outstanding, the reviews are excellent, and it’s a follow-up to a prior three-time Golden Globe nominee, “Knives Out” (2019). It is a no-brainer that this will achieve the same love as the original, and perhaps even more so given it’s one of Netflix’s only strong contenders, and it’s going to be an enormous hit for the service in December. Put Daniel Craig in Best Actor in a Comedy/Musical seems to have that nomination locked up. Janelle Monae could see herself in the hunt for a Best Supporting Actress nomination as Ana de Armas did in her lead category. Best Screenplay is more open than in 2019, leaving Rian Johnson a window for his twisty, provocative, and hilarious writing.

The star power of George Clooney and Julia Roberts did a lot to fuel the surprise box office hit “Ticket to Paradise,” and while the film received a mixed critical reception, Roberts and Clooney have open windows to receive Comedy/Musical nominations for their performances. Actress in a Comedy/Musical has always been the most open acting category (due, unfortunately, to the lack of respect for comedies as a whole), as seen with nominations for films like “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” (2012) and “Rules Don’t Apply” (2016). Did we need to nominate Angelina Jolie in *checks notes* “The Tourist” or Helen Mirren in whatever the hell “The Leisure Seeker” (2017) was?! Roberts is competing with sure-fire nominees like Michelle Yeoh and Margot Robbie and strong possibilities like Emma Thompson for “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande” or recent NYFCC Best Supporting Actress winner Keke Palmer in “Nope.” Clooney, if nominated, is competing against Farrell (who will win, you can bet money on that) and Daniel Craig.

Adam Driver is a possibility for his quirky performance in “White Noise,” as is Diego Calva for “Babylon.” Perhaps if the Globes accept “Hustle” (2022) as a Comedy/Musical, for which it is neither, Adam Sandler can finally have redemption for his horrific snub in 2019 for “Uncut Gems.” “White Noise,” in particular, feels like it will creep up with a nomination somewhere, and they’ve nominated Driver in the past, even nominating his co-star Marion Cotillard in “Annette” (2021) for an even weirder film than “White Noise.” Speaking of weird, will “Triangle of Sadness” be able to strike gold with the HFPA, or is their luck better suited for the Academy? Ruben Ostlund’s satire is one of many this year that skewers the rich, but where does it fit in with this mess? The underperformance of “Bros” diminished the critically well-received film’s chances at Picture. Still, it remains a contender for Best Original Song, as does its lead Billy Eichner in Best Actor in a Comedy/Musical. Eichner should be a shoo-in here, balancing a perfect mix of hysterical comedy and drama. As delightful as “Bros” is, few films this year were more of a joy to watch than “Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris“; fingers are crossed for Lesley Manville’s precious work as the film’s lead actress.

There are three stealth contenders here now that could break into a field of five. “Spirited,” the Apple Christmas musical with music and lyrics by Benj Pasic and Justin Paul, achieved mostly positive reviews and good audience reception, embracing itself as a comedy and traditional musical. Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds (both previous nominees) are doing their best work in years, balancing their comic chops with great singing and dancing. The Globes may be the only place to award this film in any way unless an original song can crack more awards bodies. It’s tough to know how much of a hit it is until Nielsen numbers come in, but we should expect it will play strong this holiday season and the rest of the year. 

Another to keep an eye on is “The Menu,” the horror satire by Mark Mylod. Horror has been a thriving success this year at the box office, and “The Menu,” against all odds, proved it was not an exception. Anya Taylor-Joy (nominated for Best Actress- Comedy/Musical in 2020 for “Emma“) and Ralph Fiennes (nominated in Best Actor- Comedy/Musical for 2014’s “The Grand Budapest Hotel“) now stand very good shots at nominations, and the film has the juice to represent its genre in the fifth slot in Best Motion Picture- Comedy/Musical. In many ways, it’s also “Triangle of Sadness“‘ biggest competition, being similar in themes and having a comparable balance of shocks and laughs, yet is also more accessible overall.

There is also surprisingly good word of mouth for Sony’s late contender “A Man Called Otto” (a re-adaptation of “A Man Called Ove.” While the trailer did little to impress, and the release date brought a question to the film’s chances this awards season, the first screenings were held recently, and Hanks and company seem to have delivered a surprise audience hit, which could bring on strong word of mouth. The film also features an original song co-written by Hanks’ wife and frequent collaborator Rita Wilson.


There’s always a surprise in the supporting categories you don’t see coming. The Globes will teeter more populist than the Academy in terms of star power, so you’re more likely to see Monae here than Dolly de Leon for “Triangle of Sadness” or Nina Hoss in “TÁR.” But they are also willing to go very weird and dark, especially in the Best Supporting Actor category. For instance, they love their villain performances. Whether its Jared Leto in “The Little Things” (2021), Aaron Taylor-Johnson in “Nocturnal Animals” (2016), Albert Brooks in “Drive” (2011), or going all the way back to Dennis Hopper in “Blue Velvet” (1986), the list goes on. This spot could be reserved for Eddie Redmayne in “The Good Nurse.” But something feels right about Mark Rylance in “Bones And All.” Rylance turns the creep factor up to an eleven, floating in and out of Guadagnino’s cannibal romance but never leaving your mind, like the shark in “Jaws,” hiding in the dark, waiting to strike again. In a category where the Academy may award four performances in two films and not show much love beyond that, especially to something like “Bones And All,” the Globes may be where Rylance gets in. Rylance has also begun his awards race with an Independent Spirit Award for his role, so it’s definitely a strong possibility.

As we know, the animated categories typically trend more mainstream, although last year’s nomination for “Flee” showed they are willing to go outside the box. It will be a question of whether they choose to acknowledge Disney flops “Lightyear” and “Strange World” as “Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio” has this one sewn up, signed, sealed, and delivered. The film can also contend for Best Picture- Comedy/Musical. However, with the animated category still in place, we shall wait to see if the Globes are willing to have animated films re-enter their Best Picture nominations, even though they’ve recently restructured their rules. “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish” seems to be the surprise late-breaker that crashed the Animated Feature race and threatened everything else, but what will become of indie darling and recent NBR and NYFCC winner “Marcel The Shell With Shoes On?”

The score and song categories differ from the Academy the most out of everything else. The music selections by the HFPA can range from brilliant to absolutely confounding. You can get a Best Original Score nomination for “Cloud Atlas” (2012) or a Mariah Carey Song nomination for “The Star” (2017). What seems always to be the case, though, is that they love their star power here and are more likely to nominate songs by major billboard artists no matter the quality of the film attached to it. Expect Taylor Swift’s “Carolina” from “Where the Crawdads Sing” to show up here or Doja Cat’s “Vegas” from “Elvis.” One Jonas has gotten in before for “Ferdinand” (2017); perhaps another by the name of Joe gets in here for “Devotion” with the song “Not Alone,” co-sung by Khalid. They usually take some interesting swings, though, in Best Original Score, like Alex Ebert for “All is Lost” (2013) or Daniel Pemberton for “Motherless Brooklyn” (2019). Danny Elfman’s “White Noise” score has seen a ton of praise, even from those critical of the film, and something that weird and innovative feels right to show up here.

The Globes’ foreign language category has fewer restrictions than the Academy and can even see American films pop up like “Minari” (2020) and “Letters From Iwo Jima” (2006). It’s best to predict the early frontrunners to show up here as the Academy tends to drop a few surprise inclusions and exclusions on nomination morning. The safer the bet (something like “Decision to Leave,” “Close,” and “All Quiet on the Western Front“), the more likely. When it comes to Oscar nomination predictions, it may be wise to choose more carefully.

Finally, in Best Director this award is already engraved and going to Spielberg. It’s hard to imagine who would even come close to taking it from him, especially if “The Fabelmans” is our frontrunner. Polley feels safe (and the Globes have proven they are better at nominating women than the Academy), and that’s it. The Daniels, Baz Luhrmann, Martin McDonagh, Damien Chazelle, James Cameron, Todd Field, Joseph Kosinski, Maria Schrader, Antoine Fuqua, and Gina Prince-Bythewood all feel like possible contenders. Director lineups often go 3/5 with the Academy, even 2/5 sparingly due to the Academy’s more strict and international Director’s branch. Rarely does it ever match, so prepare to make sacrifice choices. 

The Golden Globes and their placement in Hollywood history is enough discussion to fill a textbook, and while many may have their feelings for or against their right even to exist, this is all just fun speculation. Ultimately, these awards don’t matter, and they shouldn’t matter, but awards season is exciting nonetheless. This analysis could be dramatically wrong or spot-on, but either way, it’s just a harmless guessing game. 

Here are my current predictions for the film categories of the 80th Golden Globes:

Best Motion Picture- Drama
The Fabelmans
Top Gun: Maverick
Women Talking

Best Actor in a Motion Picture- Drama
Austin Butler – Elvis
Brendan Fraser – The Whale
Bill Nighy – Living
Jeremy Pope – The Inspection
Will Smith – Emancipation

Best Actress in a Motion Picture- Drama
Cate Blanchett – TÁR
Danielle Deadwyler – Till
Viola Davis – The Woman King
Jennifer Lawrence – Causeway
Michelle Williams – The Fabelmans

Best Motion Picture- Comedy/Musical
The Banshees of Inisherin
Everything Everywhere All At Once
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio

Best Actor in a Motion Picture- Comedy/Musical
Diego Calva – Babylon
Daniel Craig – Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
Billy Eichner – Bros
Colin Farrell – The Banshees of Inisherin
Tom Hanks – A Man Called Otto

Best Actress in a Motion Picture- Comedy/Musical
Leslie Manville – Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris
Margot Robbie – Babylon
Julia Roberts – Ticket to Paradise
Emma Thompson – Good Luck to You, Leo Grande
Michelle Yeoh – Everything Everywhere All At Once

Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture
Paul Dano – The Fabelmans
Brendan Gleeson – The Banshees of Inisherin
Tom Hanks – Elvis
Ke Huy Quan – Everything Everywhere All At Once
Mark Rylance – Bones And All

Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture
Jessie Buckley – Women Talking
Jamie Lee Curtis – Everything Everywhere All At Once
Claire Foy – Women Talking
Janelle Monae – Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
Carey Mulligan – She Said

Best Director
Damien Chazelle – Babylon
Baz Luhrmann – Elvis
The Daniels – Everything Everywhere All At Once
Steven Spielberg – The Fabelmans
Sarah Polley – Women Talking

Best Screenplay
The Banshees of Inisherin
Everything Everywhere All At Once
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
The Fabelmans
Women Talking

Best Score
The Fabelmans
Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
White Noise
Women Talking

Best Song
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – “Lift Me Up”
Elvis – “Vegas”
A Man Called Otto – “Till’ You’re Home”
Top Gun: Maverick – “Hold My Hand”
Where the Crawdads Sing – “Carolina”

Best Animated Film
The Bad Guys
Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
Turning Red
Puss in Boots: The Last Wish
Strange World

Best Foreign Film
All Quiet on the Western Front
Decision to Leave
Saint Omer

What do you think of my predictions? What do you think will be nominated for the Golden Globe Awards this Monday? Please let us know your thoughts in the comments section below or on our Twitter account and check out the Next Best Picture team’s latest Oscar predictions here. The Next Best Picture team’s Golden Globe nomination predictions will be posted tomorrow!

You can follow Jakob and hear more of his thoughts on the Oscars and Film on Twitter at @JakobKolness

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