Life

This is the category the Golden Globe nominations got wrong this year

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Hannah-Rose Yee
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We can’t believe we’re having this conversation again.

Only this morning, I wrote for this very website about how I’m excited for the Golden Globes this year.

And I am: Sandra Oh and Andy Samberg are going to host, and there’s always the potential that someone is going to quaff a good portion of the 7,500 glasses of Moet and Chandon champagne that are poured throughout the evening and give a truly boozed acceptance speech. For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbours, and laugh at them in our turn?

Now the nominations have been released and there’s even more to be excited for. I’m excited that Constance Wu and Crazy Rich Asians were nominated for Best Actress in a Comedy and Best Comedy. (If only Michelle Yeoh had been nominated for Best Supporting Actress). I’m excited for the three women of The Favourite – Olivia Colman, Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz – who were all nominated for awards. I’m excited for Caitriona Balfe’s fourth straight nomination for her continually superb performance as Claire in the television series Outlander. I’m doubly excited for Sandra Oh, nominated for Best Actress in a Drama for Killing Eve.

Sandra Oh in Killing Eve

Yes, there is a lot of excitement. But there are some glaring omissions in the nominations this year, particularly in the film section. No woman was nominated for Best Director, and across both Best Picture categories there wasn’t a single film directed by a woman nominated for the top prize.

This year, Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born), Alfonso Cuaron (Roma), Peter Farrelly (Green Book), Spike Lee (Blackkklansman) and Adam McKay (Vice) were nominated in the Best Director category. All of these films, as well as Bohemian Rhapsody, If Beale Street Could Talk, Black Panther, Crazy Rich Asians, The Favourite and Mary Poppins Returns were nominated for Best Picture across the comedy/musical and drama categories.

That’s 15 slots for nominations for the best movies of the year. 15 chances to recognise the work of a female filmmaker doing great work in 2018. 15 spaces to celebrate the work done by women in Hollywood this year. And all 15 of them went to men.

It’s not as if there haven’t been fantastic female-directed movies this year. There was You Were Never Really Here from the director of We Need To Talk About Kevin Lynne Ramsay. There was Can You Ever Forgive Me directed by Marielle Heller, good enough to earn two acting nominations for stars Melissa McCarthy and Richard E. Grant but not to get a Best Picture (or Best Director) nod. There was Blockers, directed by Kay Cannon. (Couldn’t that have snuck into the Best Comedy section?) There’s Mary Queen of Scots, directed by Josie Rourke and starring Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie. What about Karyn Kusama, director of the Nicole Kidman-starring thriller Destroyer? 

Marielle Heller and Melissa McCarthy on the set of Can You Ever Forgive Me

Things are slightly better over in the television section of the Golden Globes. Killing Eve, created by Phoebe Waller-Bridge, was nominated for Best Television Series (Drama) and The Marvelous Mrs Maisel, led by Amy Sherman-Palladino, was nominated for Best Television Series (Comedy). (No director awards for television are given out at the Golden Globes.) Other fantastic female-led series, including The Good Place and Homecoming were recognised, too.

But still: two out of ten isn’t the most impressive of statistics.

Only one woman has ever won the Best Director prize at the Golden Globes, and that was Barbara Streisand back in 1984. Alongside Streisand, only four women have ever been nominated in the category: Sofia Coppola, Kathryn Bigelow and Ava DuVernay. Four women and a total of six nominations. (Both Bigelow and Streisand were nominated twice). Six nominations for female directors over the course of the last 76 years. 

It feels like we have this conversation about the recognition of female directors in awards season every year, and it’s beginning to grate. 

Only last year, Natalie Portman presented the award for Best Director at the 2018 Golden Globes and lambasted the “all-male nominees”. And yet here we are again, barely a year later, in the exactly same position. It’s really not good enough. 

Here’s hoping this is the last time we have to have it. 

2019 Golden Globe Nominations

BEST MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA

BLACK PANTHER

BLACKKKLANSMAN

BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY

IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK

A STAR IS BORN

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA

GLENN CLOSE, THE WIFE

LADY GAGA, A STAR IS BORN

NICOLE KIDMAN, DESTROYER

MELISSA MCCARTHY, CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME?

ROSAMUND PIKE, A PRIVATE WAR

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA

BRADLEY COOPER, A STAR IS BORN

WILLEM DAFOE, AT ETERNITY’S GATE

LUCAS HEDGES, BOY ERASED

RAMI MALEK, BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY

JOHN DAVID WASHINGTON, BLACKKKLANSMAN

Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga in A Star Is Born

BEST MOTION PICTURE – MUSICAL OR COMEDY

CRAZY RICH ASIANS

THE FAVOURITE

GREEN BOOK

MARY POPPINS RETURNS

VICE

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE – MUSICAL OR COMEDY

EMILY BLUNT, MARY POPPINS RETURNS

OLIVIA COLMAN, THE FAVOURITE

ELSIE FISHER, EIGHTH GRADE

CHARLIZE THERON, TULLY

CONSTANCE WU, CRAZY RICH ASIANS

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE – MUSICAL OR COMEDY

CHRISTIAN BALE, VICE

LIN-MANUEL MIRANDA, MARY POPPINS RETURNS

VIGGO MORTENSEN, GREEN BOOK

ROBERT REDFORD, THE OLD MAN & THE GUN

JOHN C. REILLY, STAN & OLLIE

Emma Stone and Olivia Colman in The Favourite

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN ANY MOTION PICTURE

AMY ADAMS, VICE

CLAIRE FOY, FIRST MAN

REGINA KING, IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK

EMMA STONE, THE FAVOURITE

RACHEL WEISZ, THE FAVOURITE

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN ANY MOTION PICTURE

MAHERSHALA ALI, GREEN BOOK

TIMOTHÉE CHALAMET, BEAUTIFUL BOY

ADAM DRIVER, BLACKKKLANSMAN

RICHARD E. GRANT, CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME?

SAM ROCKWELL, VICE

Images: Getty, 20th Century Fox

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