News / Arts & Entertainment

Hollywood Kicks Off 2014 Awards Season with Golden Globes

Hollywood Foreign Press Association President Theo Kingma speaks at the podium as (L-R) actors Zoe Saldana, Aziz Ansari and Olivia Wilde sit on stage at the announcement of nominations for the 71st annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California,
Hollywood Foreign Press Association President Theo Kingma speaks at the podium as (L-R) actors Zoe Saldana, Aziz Ansari and Olivia Wilde sit on stage at the announcement of nominations for the 71st annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California,
Reuters
In a year widely regarded as a bountiful one for high-quality films and acting, the Golden Globes weigh in on Sunday with the first big honors of the Hollywood awards season, which  culminates in seven weeks with the Oscars.

Two starkly different American stories lead nominations for the 71st Annual Golden Globe Awards with seven nods apiece - the brutal depiction of pre-Civil War slavery 12 Years a Slave and 1970s corruption caper American Hustle. They will compete for best motion picture in different categories, drama and comedy or musical, respectively.

Gravity, starring Sandra Bullock as an astronaut lost in space and life, also ranks high in experts' predictions and could give 12 Years a Slave a challenge for the night's most coveted award, best drama.

Golden Globes are also given out for television, where established dramas like Breaking Bad and Downton Abbey will compete with the likes of Netflix newcomer House of Cards.

The Golden Globes, under the purview of some 90 journalists in the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, have outsized clout in the awards race as buzz around these first honors influences members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts  and Sciences in their voting for the Oscars, which will be handed out March 2.

"You can just see the Oscar voter who starts to hear the buzz build for '12 Years a Slave,' and has been dreading picking up the (DVD) screener to watch the movie," said Keith Simanton, managing editor for the IMDB movie site.

"But he reaches for it, and says to his wife, 'Maybe we ought to watch it.'"

Oscar nominations will be announced on Thursday, but voting has already concluded. The Globes have a mixed record when it comes to predicting the Oscar best picture, though last year's best drama winner, Argo, did go on to win the Academy Award for best movie.

The Golden Globes follow a very good year for film, both commercially and critically. North American box office receipts totaled a record $10.9 billion in 2013 and top performers went beyond the typical blockbuster action movies to include acclaimed films such as Gravity.

Sunday night could also boost the fortunes of smaller films that have fared well among critics, including Joel and Ethan Coen's paean to 1960s folk music Inside Llewyn Davis, Spike Jonze's quirky computer-age romance Her, and Alexander Payne's homage to the heartland Nebraska.

Oscar-winning women compete

This image released by Fox Searchlight shows Lupita Nyong’o, from left, Michael Fassbender and Chiwetel Ejiofor in a scene from This image released by Fox Searchlight shows Lupita Nyong’o, from left, Michael Fassbender and Chiwetel Ejiofor in a scene from "12 Years A Slave."
x
This image released by Fox Searchlight shows Lupita Nyong’o, from left, Michael Fassbender and Chiwetel Ejiofor in a scene from
This image released by Fox Searchlight shows Lupita Nyong’o, from left, Michael Fassbender and Chiwetel Ejiofor in a scene from "12 Years A Slave."
The intense competition extends to the acting races, where Britain's Chiwetel Ejiofor will compete for best actor in a drama for his role as the free man sold into slavery in 12 Years a Slave. Matthew McConaughey is also considered a frontrunner for his portrayal of an unlikely AIDS activist in Dallas Buyers Club, for which he lost 50 pounds.

Leonardo DiCaprio will get his shot at best actor in a comedy or musical for his turn as a swindling stockbroker in Martin Scorsese's tale of American greed, The Wolf of Wall Street. He has stiff competition from veteran actor Bruce Dern as a cantankerous and delusional father in Nebraska.

For best actress in a drama, it's a battle between Oscar winners, with Bullock going up against Cate Blanchett for her riches-to-rags role in Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine and Judi Dench for her turn as a mother looking for a long-lost son in adoption drama Philomena.

The HFPA will also honor Woody Allen with the Cecil B DeMille award recognizing outstanding contribution to the entertainment field. Allen, famously averse to awards shows, is not expected to collect the honor, but one of his favorite actresses, Diane Keaton, will reportedly stand in for him.

While considered a warm-up for the Academy Awards, the Golden Globes live telecast on Comcast Corp's NBC network offers many of the same ingredients, such as the glamor of the red carpet for Hollywood's leading ladies and the dense concentration of Tinseltown's top talent in one room.

But the Globes serve up cocktails and an air of whimsy and unpredictability in contrast to the more tightly scripted Academy Awards.

Comedians Tina Fey and Amy Poehler will return to host the Golden Globes for the second consecutive year.

You May Like

Kurdish President: More Needed to Defeat Islamic State

In interview with VOA's Persian Service, Massoud Barzani says peshmerga forces have not received weapons, logistical support needed to successfully fight IS in northern Iraq More

Sierra Leone's Stray Dog Population Doubles During Ebola Crisis

Many dog owners fear their pets could infect them with the virus and have abandoned them, leading to the increase and sparking fears of rabies More

Video New Brain Mapping Techniques Could Ease Chronic Pain

New methods for mapping pain in the brain not only validate sufferers of chronic pain but might someday also lead to better treatment More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
New Brain Mapping Techniques Could Ease Chronic Paini
X
Shelley Schlender
April 20, 2015 7:03 PM
Pain has a purpose - it can stop you from touching a flame or from walking on a broken leg. As an injury heals, the pain goes away. Usually. But worldwide, one out of every five people suffers from pain that lasts for months and years, leading to lost jobs, depression, and rising despair when medical interventions fail or health experts hint that a pain sufferer is making it up. From Boulder, Colorado, Shelley Schlender reports that new methods for mapping pain in the brain are providing validation for chronic pain and might someday guide better treatment.
Video

Video New Brain Mapping Techniques Could Ease Chronic Pain

From Boulder, Colorado, Shelley Schlender reports that new methods for mapping pain in the brain are providing validation for chronic pain and might someday guide better treatment.
Video

Video Hope, Prayer Enter Fight Against S. Africa Xenophobia

South Africa has been swept by disturbing attacks on foreign nationals. Some blame the attacks on a legacy of colonialism, while others say the economy is to blame. Whatever the cause, ordinary South Africans - and South African residents from around the world - say they're praying for the siege of violence to end. Anita Powell reports from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Italy Rescues Migrants After Separate Deadly Capsize Incident

Italy continued its massive search and rescue operation in the Mediterranean Monday for the capsized boat off the coast of Libya that was carrying hundreds of migrants, while at the same time rescuing Syrian migrants from another vessel off the coast of Sicily. Thirteen children were among the 98 Syrian migrants whose boat originated from Turkey on the perilous journey to Europe.
Video

Video New Test Set to Be Game Changer in Eradicating Malaria

The World Health Organization estimates 3.4 billion people are at risk of malaria, with children under the age of five and pregnant women being the most vulnerable. As World Malaria Day approaches (April 25), mortality rates are falling, and a new test -- well into the last stage of trials -- is having positive results in Kenya. Lenny Ruvaga reports for VOA from Nairobi.
Video

Video Are Energy Needs Putting Thailand's Natural Beauty at Risk?

Thailand's appetite for more electricity has led to the construction of new dams along the Mekong River to the north and new coal plants near the country's famous beaches in the south. A proposed coal plant in a so-called "green zone" has touched off a debate. VOA's Steve Sandford reports.
Video

Video Overwhelmed by Migrants, Italy Mulls Military Action to Stabilize Libya

Thousands more migrants have arrived on the southern shores of Italy from North Africa in the past two days. Authorities say they expect the total number of arrivals this year to far exceed previous levels, and the government has said military action in Libya might be necessary to stem the flow. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Putin Accuses Kyiv of ‘Cutting Off’ Eastern Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin, in his annual televised call-in program, again denied there were any Russian troops fighting in Ukraine. He also said the West was trying to ‘contain’ Russia with sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports on reactions to the president’s four-hour TV appearance.
Video

Video Eye Contact Secures Dog's Place in Human Heart

Dogs serve in the military, work with police and assist the disabled, and have been by our side for thousands of years serving as companions and loyal friends. We love them. They love us in return. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports on a new study that looks at the bio-chemical bond that cements that human-canine connection.
Video

Video Ukrainian Volunteers Search for Bodies of Missing Soldiers

As the cease-fire becomes more fragile in eastern Ukraine, a team of volunteer body collectors travels to the small village of Savur Mohyla in the what pro-Russian separatists call the Donetsk Peoples Republic - to retrieve bodies of fallen Ukrainian servicemen from rebel-held territories. Adam Bailes traveled with the team and has this report.
Video

Video Xenophobic Violence Sweeps South Africa

South Africa, long a haven for African immigrants, has been experiencing the worst xenophobic violence in years, with at least five people killed and hundreds displaced in recent weeks. From Johannesburg, VOA’s Anita Powell brings us this report.
Video

Video Apollo 13, NASA's 'Successful Failure,' Remembered

The Apollo 13 mission in 1970 was supposed to be NASA's third manned trip to the moon, but it became much more. On the flight's 45th anniversary, astronauts and flight directors gathered at Chicago's Adler Planetarium to talk about how the aborted mission changed manned spaceflight and continues to influence space exploration today. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video Badly Burned Ukrainian Boy Bravely Fights Back

A 9-year-old Ukrainian boy has returned to his native country after intensive treatment in the United States for life-threatening burns. Volodia Bubela, burned in a house fire almost a year ago, battled back at a Boston hospital, impressing doctors with his bravery. Faith Lapidus narrates this report from VOA's Tetiana Kharchenko.
Video

Video US Maternity Leave Benefits Much Less Than Many Countries

It was almost 20 years ago that representatives of 189 countries met at a UN conference in Beijing and adopted a plan of action to achieve gender equality around the world. Now, two decades later, the University of California Los Angeles World Policy Analysis Center has issued a report examining what the Beijing Platform for Action has achieved. From Los Angeles, Elizabeth Lee has more.
Video

Video Endangered Hawaiian Birds Get Second Chance

Of the world's nearly 9,900 bird species, 13 percent are threatened with extinction, according to BirdLife International. Among them are two Hawaiian honeycreepers - tiny birds that live in the forest canopy, and, as the name implies, survive on nectar from tropical flowers. Scientists at the San Diego Zoo report they have managed to hatch half a dozen of their chicks in captivity, raising hopes that the birds will flutter back from the brink of extinction. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Exhibit Brings Renaissance Master Out of the Shadows

The National Gallery of Art in Washington has raised the curtain on one of the most intriguing painters of the High Renaissance. Mostly ignored after his death in the early 1500s, Italian master Piero di Cosimo is now claiming his place alongside the best-known artists of the period. VOA’s Ardita Dunellari reports.

VOA Blogs

New in Music Alley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harry Wayne Casey – “KC” of KC and the Sunshine Band – comes to VOA’s Studio 4 to talk with "Border Crossings" host Larry London and perform songs from his new album, “Feeling You! The 60s.”