This year’s Golden Globes kicked off with jokes about Sia’s controversial Autism film Music, the divisive Netflix hit Emily in Paris and James Corden’s performance in The Prom.
Tina Fey and Amy Poehler have returned to host this year’s ceremony, at first addressing the strangeness of awarding films and television shows in the middle of a pandemic.
That meant, Fey joked, that some of the television to be spotlighted by this year’s Globes included: “The American Office, old Columbos, very one-sided news programmes, the Zoom town halls about your schools staying closed, and of course the cranberry juice skateboard guy.”
On Music, Fey joked: “Sia’s controversial Music is nominated for Best International Flopperoonie. I don’t want to get into it, guys, but it’s really problematic. Twitter is saying it’s the most offensive casting since Kate Hudson was the Weightwatchers spokesperson.”
James Corden was also mocked by Fey, while referencing a fellow nominee: “The Queen’s Gambit is whatever James Corden was up to in The Prom, I guess.”
On the difference between film and television: “If the British actors are playing Brits, that’s TV,” explained Fey. “If they’re playing Americans, that’s a movie. If you find yourself saying, ‘Mario Lopez is surprisingly good in this’ – that’s TV. If it stars Matthew McConaughey as a poetic drifter – that’s a car commercial.”
On Emily in Paris, Fey joked that she “couldn’t wait” to find out whether it is a Musical or a Comedy, per the category it’s been nominated in. She got in another dig while discussing a fellow nominated film: “French Exit is what I did after watching the first episode of Emily in Paris.”
On The Undoing: “The Undoing was a sexy and dramatic mystery where Nicole Kidman’s coat was suspected of murdering her wig.”
Fey and Poehler also addressed the controversy over the Globes awards body, The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which is under fire after it was revealed to have not had a single Black member for more than 20 years.
“Look, a lot of flashy garbage got nominated but that happens, okay? That’s like their thing,” Poehler said. “But a number of Black actors and Black-led projects were overlooked.”
Fey added: “We all know award shows are stupid. The point is, even with stupid things, inclusivity is important and there are no Black members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association ... You have to change that.”
The pair also tried to explain why Pixar’s Soul had proven particularly popular among Globes voters. “Soul is a beautiful Pixar animated movie where a Black man’s soul is knocked out of his body and into a cat,” Fey said. “They responded to this because they have five cat members.”
Fey and Poehler were not physically together while hosting the Globes, with Poehler presenting from the show’s traditional Beverly Hills home, and Fey hosting New York’s Rainbow Room.
Keep up to date with all of the ceremony’s wins on our live blog here.