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Netflix flexes muscles at virtual Golden Globes with 'Queen's Gambit', 'Crown' amid diversity flap

Alexandra Canal
·4-min read

In a year tainted by the coronavirus pandemic, the show must go on — and the Golden Globes did just that on Sunday night, albeit virtually.

The annual award show, hosted by both Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, was especially favorable to Netflix (NFLX), which took home the most awards out of any other platform.

Big winners for the streamer included "The Queen's Gambit," which walked away with Best Limited Series amid stiff competition, along with a Best Actress victory for star Anya Taylor-Joy. "The Crown" won Best TV Series, Drama. Gillian Anderson, Josh O'Connor and Emma Corrin all secured individual wins for their work on the show. Also, the critically acclaimed "The Trial of the Chicago 7" nabbed Best Screenplay.

A poignant and emotional moment saw the late Chadwick Boseman win Best Actor for his role in "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom," which his wife tearfully accepted on his behalf.

Renée Zellweger announces the late Chadwick Boseman as winner of the Best Actor - Motion Picture Drama award for ‘Ma Rainey's Black Bottom’ onstage at the 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards
Renée Zellweger announces the late Chadwick Boseman as winner of the Best Actor - Motion Picture Drama award for ‘Ma Rainey's Black Bottom’ onstage at the 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards

Meanwhile, Jason Sudeikis won Best Actor for the Apple TV+ series “Ted Lasso” (AAPL), while Sacha Baron Cohen's "Borat Subsequent Moviefilm" (AMZN) took home one of the top prizes for Amazon Prime Video with Best Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy. Sacha Baron Cohen was also awarded Best Actor for his starring role in the film while John Boyega won Best Supporting Actor for Amazon and BBC’s "Small Axe."

Disney's "Soul" (DIS) received two awards: Best Animated Picture and Best Original Score, while Andra Day helped Hulu score its only award of the night by winning Best Actress for her work in "The United States vs Billie Holiday."

Still, despite the obvious shift to streaming, traditional movies and TV shows performed quite well.

Pop TV's "Schitt's Creek" — which dominated the 2020 Emmys — won Best TV Series, Musical or Comedy and Best Actress for Catherine O’Hara.

To cap off the night, Searchlight Pictures’ "Nomadland" won Best Motion Picture, Drama with director Chloé Zhao becoming the first woman to win the Best Director honor since 1984.

Globes acknowledges diversity controversy

The award show did not shy away from its recent scandals after the "L.A. Times" published a scathing exposé on the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), a nonprofit which consists of 87 foreign journalists who dole out the annual Golden Globe awards, and found evidence of alleged corruption, bullying, and self-dealing.

The investigation noted that out of the 87 members of the HFPA, not one of them is Black.

In the opening monologue, hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler were quick to call out the organization and its lack of representation.

"The Hollywood Foreign Press Association is made up of around 90 international no-Black journalists who attend movie junkets each year in search of a better life," Fey said dryly. "We say around 90 because a couple of them might be ghosts, and it's rumored that the German member is just a sausage that somebody drew a little face on."

Poehler added that the public is "understandably upset at the HFPA and their choices. Look, a lot of flashy garbage got nominated but that happens. That's like their thing. But a number of Black actors and Black-led projects were overlooked."

"We all know awards shows are stupid," Fey jumped in.

The "flashy garbage" Poehler referred to could have been a not so subtle dig at the Netflix series "Emily in Paris," which was nominated for Best TV Series, Musical or Comedy while prominent Black-centric programs like "I May Destroy You" and "Insecure" were shut out of the running.

Netflix's 'Emily in Paris' (Courtesy: Netflix)
Netflix's 'Emily in Paris' (Courtesy: Netflix)

According to the "L.A. Times" report, over 30 HFPA members were flown to France to visit the set of that show in 2019 and were treated by Paramount Network to a two-night stay at the five-star Peninsula Paris hotel, where rooms currently start at about $1,400 a night, and a news conference and lunch at the Musée des Arts Forains.

Shortly after Fey and Poehler's opening monologue, three members of the HFPA appeared onstage. Vice president Helen Hoehne said, “We must have Black journalists within our organization,” while the former president and board chair Meher Tatna added, “We must also ensure everyone from all underrepresented communities gets a seat at our table —and we are going to make that happen."

Alexandra is a Producer & Entertainment Correspondent at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @alliecanal8193

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