There is nothing more mysterious in the make-believe hype of awards season than the Hollywood Foreign Press and their score card for picking good films and good television shows. While everyone continues to wonder whether there will be a show at all, due to the continued writers strike, for the HFPA it’s been business as usual.
The films Atonement, No Country for Old Men, There Will Be Blood, American Gangster, Michael Clayton, Eastern Promises, and The Great Debaters were nominated in the Drama category, and in the Musical/Comedy category, Across the Universe, Charlie Wilson’s War, Hairspray, Juno, and Sweeney Todd.
For television, the picture looked a little different. While many of the expected dramas missed the list (Heroes, namely), they did award AMC’s Mad Men and FX’s Damages, two of the best new shows on cable. Joining those are HBO’s Big Love, Showtime’s The Tudors, and ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy, and of course, Fox’s House.
The actors honored include Michael C. Hall for Dexter, Jon Hamm for Mad Men, Hugh Laurie for House, Jonathan Rhys Meyers for The Tudors, and Bill Paxton for Big Love. The women nominated in the drama category include Patricia Arquette for Medium, Glenn Close for Damages, Minnie Driver for The Riches, Edie Falco for The Sopranos, Sally Field for Brothers & Sisters, Holly Hunter for Amazing Grace, and Kyra Sedgwick for The Closer.
Mad Men gets a major boost from these nominations, as the show was depending primarily on the rapidly spreading word of mouth. But an awards show like this will give the nominated stars a chance to walk the red carpet (if the show does go on), which will no doubt bring many more viewers to it.
Damages is another show with scenery-chewing brilliance that benefits from a little, okay a lot, of Globe attention. Ted Danson, along with Rose Byrne, is also nominated in a supporting role. Damages promises more thrills and chills to come, and unless the writers stop striking and start writing it may lose its momentum. For now, it’s the greatest guilty pleasure in prime time.
The showdown between the TV divas is going to be one of the more interesting races of the night, with perhaps only Minnie Driver not showing any signs of potentially winning. Sedgwick, Hunter, Close, and Arquette, not to mention Edie Falco in her final year, to say nothing of the one who always wins anyway, Sally Field. Women do not dominate the Oscar race, but they most certainly overshadow their male counterparts in the television categories.
Should it actually get on the air, the Globes look to be a star-studded, highly rated extravaganza, complete with Brad and Angie even (Angelina Jolie is nominated for a Best Actress Globe for A Mighty Heart). If it never gets on the air, it will be forever remembered as the greatest Golden Globes ceremony that never happened.
No one really wants to think about a year without a Golden Globes, or an Oscars for that matter, but it is a potential inevitability.
Read the full list of nominations on the Golden Globes’ website, goldenglobes.org.