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NBC Cancels The Golden Globes Amid HFPA Controversy

Originally published on May 10, 2021 10:41 pm
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MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

The Golden Globes will not air on NBC next year. Network execs have announced they are canceling the show. They say it's because the Hollywood Foreign Press Association - that is the group that gives out the Golden Globes - that this group needs more time to reform itself. An LA Times investigation earlier this year detailed allegations of unethical, possibly illegal activities by the association that has caused a storm in Hollywood. Stacy Perman broke that story on the HFPA, and she joins us now from Los Angeles to talk about this latest twist.

Welcome.

STACY PERMAN: Thank you for having me.

KELLY: So what else is NBC saying about why it's canceling the show?

PERMAN: Well, I think NBC was really on the receiving end of a lot of pressure. The HFPA announced last week that they were going to move forward on a set of reforms. And fairly quickly, the tide turned against the HFPA. A number of groups in the industry from, you know, a powerful group of publicists, Time's Up, said they didn't go far enough or fast enough. They complained about the timeline. They thought that the group would just go through the next voting cycle without any significant change in place. And so a number of dominoes fell. You had last week, very significantly, Netflix said that they were cutting ties until they saw changes. And that was followed by Amazon and a number of A-list stars like Mark Ruffalo and Scarlett Johansson and the director Ava DuVernay following suit. And then it just snowballed from there.

KELLY: Right.

PERMAN: Very quickly, Warner Brothers, the first studio, also came on board and said that they were cutting ties.

KELLY: Now, just to spell out what we are talking about, the allegations, which you helped document, against the Hollywood Foreign Press Association - they range from sexism to racism to homophobia. Has the association responded yet to this move by NBC?

PERMAN: Yes, they've put out a statement, you know, saying basically that change is coming. I mean, they've been saying that all along - change is coming, and they are committed to change. But I think, you know, the tide turned against them. You know, following our investigations in the Globes, they made a lot of statements that they were going to do better, but it was followed by a lot of missteps. And so I think people were waiting to see what was going to happen May 6. And, they are, you know, not satisfied at all. And this is kind of where we are. And I think after Warner Brothers dropped that shoe, NBC really didn't have a choice but to take this action because without the studios, without the talent, there's no Globes.

KELLY: OK. Well, that was my next question. Does this mean no Golden Globes or just mean that - in 2022 or just mean that NBC isn't going to broadcast them?

PERMAN: Well, it means there's no Globes for 2022, and 2023 is - there's a question mark around it. I think they want to see how this is going to play out - if those significant changes around diversity, around ethics, around the process of voting, around finances are going to be tackled and handled adequately, you know, composition around the membership, a host of issues, really - a host of issues. I think they're going to wait and see how that plays out before they determine 2023. But certainly 2022 is off the table.

KELLY: Right. In the 30 seconds or so that we have left, what are the consequences of this potentially for NBC? I mean, how many people were watching the Golden Globes to begin with?

PERMAN: Well, like most of the award shows this season, the ratings took a nosedive. But it is a fairly lucrative show for NBC, so they're going to definitely take a financial hit in terms of advertising. There's no doubt about that. But it's also going to change the landscape for the awards season because the Globes is the first up, and they kind of set the stage.

KELLY: Right.

PERMAN: I think a lot of people are going to watch how this is going to play out.

KELLY: All right, Stacy Perman reporting with the Los Angeles Times.

Thank you.

PERMAN: Thank you.

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