From Richard Rushfield‘s latest Ankler column, “The Sound of No Globes Clapping“: “While founded as a promotional vehicle for Hollywood films, there’s a very good case to be made that the awards firmament these days (Oscars, Globes, CCA, BAFTAs, guilds, critics groups) may actually chase more viewers away than it brings in, if you look at this from the audiences’ perspective (remember them?).”
In other words, the cinematic intrigues of Joe and Jane Popcorn and the awards-giving fraternity used to overlap on occasion and would be “good for business,” as the phrase goes.
As recently as five or six years ago, Best Picture competitiveness for films like La La Land ($447 million worldwide), Manchester By The Sea ($79 million worldwide) and Moonlight ($65 million worldwide) would occasionally translate into good box-office energy. The term “quality-level awards contender” used to mean “hmmm, maybe it’s worth catching at the AMC plex.”
But no longer. In fact, once the word gets out that Guy Lodge, Amy Nicholson, Eric Kohn, David Fear, Ella Taylor, Walter Chaw, David Ehrlich and Justin Chang are strongly recommending this or that film, your basic popcorn hoi polloi response is “okay, definitely not theatrical….not if those guys are high on it…strictly an HBO Max or Netflix or Amazon-er…maybe.”
Rushfield: “On that entire campaign trail there was exactly one stop” — i.e., the Golden Globes — “that wasn’t a burden to slog through. Yes, it was thrown by people whom ‘The Community’ didn’t take totally seriously. But maybe it wasn’t such a horrible thing for stars-participants-audience to refuse to treat an awards show with the same solemnity as, say, the announcement of a new cancer treatment.
“And now, congratulations…at a moment when Hollywood is, shall we say, realigning its relationship with the viewing public, they got rid of the one event that stood a chance still of winning over a few fans, portraying the Hollywood weltanschauung in a slightly less weltschmertzy light. With essentially sizzle reels for TV shows and films, and stars who weren’t birthed on TikTok.”