OFF THE CARPET: All Globed out

Posted by · 11:13 am · January 18th, 2010

Jeff Bridges at the 2010 Golden Globe AwardsAs it turned out, the only celebration I made it to last night was Fox’s Globes after-party at Craft in Century City.  Given that “Avatar” and “Crazy Heart” were two of three films to win more than one Globe (the other being Pixar’s “Up”), it kind of felt like the place to be.

The early part of the evening was dominated by the “Crazy Heart” crew.  I came in with Ryan Bingham and Scott Cooper, the latter dumbfounded at how certain celebs were getting his number to send well-wishes and praise for his little film.  Bingham, meanwhile, told me he was at the bar when the Best Original Song category was announced, which explains why T Bone Burnett accepted solo.  “Sorry for partyin’,” Bingham told me.  “Story of my life.”

Burnett, it turns out, will be producing Bingham’s next album.

Meanwhile, you could follow the bursts of applause to locate Jeff Bridges, who took down the Best Actor in a Drama trophy when many thought George Clooney would register with the, shall we say, star-friendly HFPA.  Then again, whoever said Bridges wasn’t a star?  And judging by the standing ovation, his second of the weekend (everyone was on their feet Friday, too), you can expect his steamroll through the season to continue next weekend at the Screen Actors Guild Awards and then, ultimately: the Oscar.  Interesting to note his lawyer advised him not to take the part, I assume thinking it wasn’t high enough on a scale of exposure.

And yet here we are.

The “Avatar” folks began to file in slowly but surely.  First there was Sigourney Weaver, who I never did get a chance to meet.  Then Stephen Lang was in the house.  We spoke briefly about his reunion with director Michael Mann in “Public Enemies” and his work as the hard-assed jarhead (or perhaps “scarhead” is more applicable) in James Cameron’s film.  Nothing earth-shattering.  Zoe Saldana, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Peter Sarsgaard, Tom Rothman, Jon Landau, the venue began to fill out.

James Cameron at Craft in Century CityHowever, it wasn’t until nearly 11:00 that Cameron strolled in with a tribe of photographers.  I didn’t want to engage with him much more than a simple “loved your movie, saw it a few times,” but I guess that was too much of his time, judging by his cool reaction.  Alright, he perked up a bit, but he literally thought I was going to steal his Golden Globe at one point.  Settle down, King of the World.

Anyway, not exactly brilliant reportage, but The Carpetbagger’s Paula Schwartz was at the same event and does a nice job of canvasing the territory here.

As for the ceremony itself (I was 9/14 on my predictions), we all know not to put too much stock into what the HFPA decides to anoint.  Their choices couldn’t be more reflective of a desire to hob-nob with the stars (Robert Downey Jr.’s win, for instance — though I’ve been saying for a while that I quite liked his performance) or appear tragically hip (like, say, “The Hangover” winning Best Picture comedy).  I wouldn’t say Cameron’s win means anything in the grand scheme because, as I’ve been reporting, the HFPA wasn’t keen on “The Hurt Locker” (if the film’s zero win count didn’t clue you in) and a guy like Cameron, or Quentin Tarantino for that matter, a “celeb” director, was simply more up their alley.

Guy does a nice job of rounding out perspective on the evening below.

But an Oscar season works in ebbs and flows.  We’re just under two months away from the actual Oscarcast.  There is time for any number of backlashes to settle in.  Ballots for nominations are due Saturday, so the buzz of the last fortnight is the most relevant.  Things to note in that time: “Avatar” has run up the box office story.  Maggie Gyllenhaal has hit the publicity circuit (as “Crazy Heart” has expanded further).  The guilds have spoken up for “A Serious Man” and “District 9,” but rebuffed (for the most part) “Invictus.” And “Nine,” of course, has missed with critics and audiences and managed to come away from the CCMAs and Golden Globes empty-handed.

Kate Hudson at the 2010 Golden Globe AwardsWhat an event like the Globes does afford is a massive audience for winners to seal the deal with their acceptance speeches.  And by all accounts, Jeff Bridges and Mo’Nique did just that with heart-felt soliloquies that registered just the right notes.  Sandra Bullock, meanwhile, with another great speech, has come right up along side Meryl Streep in the lead actress race, adding yet another element of drama to the season.  “The Hangover,” after being recognized by a few guilds, has won a Best Picture prize over four films that have been expected to figure into the Oscar race in some way.  Very interesting times.

And then next weekend I’m thinking “Inglourious Basterds” takes the SAG ensemble award, fracturing the race in one more direction.  But this is what we want, right?  A race that, for lack of a better phrase, remains somewhat up in the air throughout?

I’ve gone through the Contenders section and done some weeding, but not a lot.  The sidebar has also been updated, but there isn’t really much to discuss on that front.  I will say that I think the bottom tier of the 10 is soft at the moment and more in flux than you might think.  Any of the seven films listed as dark horses in the Best Picture section have a play here and, at the end of the day, we might have a surprise or two pop up.

One can only hope.




→ 36 Comments Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Filed in: Off the Carpet

36 responses so far

  • 1 1-18-2010 at 11:26 am

    David said...

    I can only hope that The Hurt Locker taking home nothing last night will remind the Academy that it would be a shame for them to not award it anything.

    Hopefully, this will work in its favor.

  • 2 1-18-2010 at 11:42 am

    AmericanRequiem said...

    avatar hit 500 million today, if inglourious deserves to win anything its the sag ensemble award, im enjoying this season very much, still waiting for invictus to fall out of the 10

  • 3 1-18-2010 at 12:21 pm

    Joel said...

    When do the Oscar nominations come out?

  • 4 1-18-2010 at 12:21 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    February 2.

  • 5 1-18-2010 at 12:29 pm

    aaron said...

    cameron came off less-than-charming and a bit paranoid? oh, i find this impossible to believe.

    impossible, improbable, irreparable, inconceivable. it’s ludicrous, ridiculous, slanderous, outrageous, dangerous, malicious, and a gross misrepresentation!

    anybody liking my jackie childs impression here?

  • 6 1-18-2010 at 12:33 pm

    Daniel said...

    Cameron sounds like a douche.

    Get ya fingas off me gold!

  • 7 1-18-2010 at 12:39 pm

    Aleksis said...

    When do the BAFTA nominations come out?

  • 8 1-18-2010 at 12:42 pm

    Craig said...

    I also think Basterds will be grabbing SAG ensemble (a fully deserved award, if I may say so myself) and keeping itself in play (though a longshot) for the top prize. I think Up in the Air can pretty much close up shop now though…

  • 9 1-18-2010 at 12:45 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Aleksis: Thursday.

  • 10 1-18-2010 at 1:11 pm

    maurier said...

    Wow, you predict The Milk of Sorrow for an Oscar nomination! I’d be more than happy if it were indeed nominated but I don’t think that such an honest and brilliant film could get a nomination. It’s a kind of cinema experience Academy members are not accustomed to.

  • 11 1-18-2010 at 1:17 pm

    Bill Melidoneas said...

    I’ve personally felt it was a two-horse race for awhile now. Avatar the box office behemoth / the populist choice, Hurt Locker the critics darling.

    If Cameron takes the DGA = Done Deal.

  • 12 1-18-2010 at 1:34 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Maurier: I hear the Academy responded well to it. I’m still collecting the foreign titles so I can finally weigh in myself one of these days.

  • 13 1-18-2010 at 1:35 pm

    Andrew said...

    Cant wait for the BAFTA noms in two days for some Bright Star recognition. AMPAS aint going to do it

  • 14 1-18-2010 at 1:45 pm

    Jack said...

    Does anyone know when the Academy is going to announce the foreign film shortlist? I think it was about this time last year.

  • 15 1-18-2010 at 1:51 pm

    Jonathan Spuij said...

    Wednesday is the anouncement for the Foreign shortlist if I’ve been informed correctly.

  • 16 1-18-2010 at 1:57 pm

    JR said...

    Cameron is a world-class a-hole. All one needs to do is consider my favorite moment of the evening – the Scorsese retrospective. Astonishing… The latter makes films that look fantastic but are chock-a-block with incredible performances. When he gave his speech, Scorsese was humble, speaking of his own film heroes rather than himself.

    The self-described King of the World only sees himself, where Scorsese recognizes he’s only a part of a great tradition. Cameron may be respected, but he will never, ever be revered like Scorsese.

  • 17 1-18-2010 at 2:02 pm

    JR said...

    Gawd, just read the Carpetbagger: http://carpetbagger.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/01/18/the-250-million-underdog-celebrates/

    Do we really need more proof that Cameron is a major-league d-bag??? This is why I hate to see him win. It’s like giving crack to a major-league crackhead.

  • 18 1-18-2010 at 2:30 pm

    SHAAAARK said...

    My problem is that Cameron already has an Oscar, for another massive film that also won a ton of others things. He’s a really competent director, with some serious technological vision, but he isn’t even close to an auteur, or a great director. With The Hurt Locker, Bigelow proved she can be just that, a great director. Oh, and Quentin Tarantino’s credentials are proven, too. But then, this is an ideological issue, isn’t it?
    The Oscars are always a fascinating battle of film ideology, where the right and good typically loses to the gratifying, “worthy”, and shiny. Ugh, at least I have 2007 to remember. IT WAS NEARLY PERFECT, such that the worst win was in Visual Effects!

  • 19 1-18-2010 at 3:03 pm

    Robert Hamer said...

    @ SHAAAARK: Haha, no kidding!

  • 20 1-18-2010 at 3:18 pm

    /3rtfu11 said...

    “He’s a really competent director, with some serious technological vision, but he isn’t even close to an auteur, or a great director.”

    James Cameron is an auteur. His films since Aliens (1986) carry a signature look – steely blue, European saturated level color, spherical based cinematography. The sound design on his films –hold a consistent character. Themes of Motherhood, Marriage, Strong Female Character, Technology, Military, Environment – and, he’s only made 7 films.

  • 21 1-18-2010 at 3:30 pm

    Chad Hartigan said...

    What’s so amazing about the directing of The Hurt Locker? Not trying to be a dick, just want to hear some answers.

  • 22 1-18-2010 at 4:07 pm

    Andrew F said...

    A side-question, but I’m curious now. Can animated films still be nominated in the two Best Picture categories at the GGs, now that there is a separate category? I can’t seem to find any rules why they can’t be.

    A friend of mine was asking why “Up” wasn’t nominated for Best Picture (Comedy), and I couldn’t give an answer…

  • 23 1-18-2010 at 4:31 pm

    JR said...

    I think what’s so glorious about Bigelow’s work in The Hurt Locker is that it’s not obvious. When I saw it, considering the subject matter and her rep as an “action” director, I was expecting a lot of blood and bombast. Instead, I experienced a tremendous character study. It seemed that Bigelow created great setups, then let her actors loose. Even the cameos made their mark, not simply “Oh, look! Ralph Fiennes!” Her direction seemed to be – Be Present. Each actor appeared to be both completely in actor but utterly in the moment. The result? I was deeply moved without feeling manipulated. When I woke the next AM, I couldn’t stop thinking about the characters. My brother-in-law – a vet – can’t shake it.

  • 24 1-18-2010 at 4:38 pm

    Andrew said...

    It is interesting to read the shock and dismay every year when the films we think are the best and should win dont do so. I think the Globes rarely and the Oscars even more rarely award the top prize to the best film

  • 25 1-18-2010 at 5:21 pm

    Michael said...

    I second what Andrew said. Besides Inglourious Basterds, I don’t share a single film in my top ten with any of the films nominated for the Golden Globes, and probably not even the Oscars either. I liked a lot of the movies that were nominated, but they didn’t change my life like some other great movies did this year.

    And also from what Chad was asking, What about the Hurt Locker was so good in terms of directing? I thought it looked like any average Tony Scott/Jason Bourne action film with maybe not as much MTV-style editing. I was entertained but I never thought it was even close to being a film worthy of awards. I did get a kick out of watching the Golden Globes with a lot of my friends who are not movie buffs, and half of them said they hadn’t even heard of The Hurt Locker before last night. How a movie that no one has seen is even being considered a frontrunner is beyond me.

  • 26 1-18-2010 at 5:50 pm

    JJ said...

    Michael, exactly. I liked THE HURT LOCKER quite a bit (not in my top 10, though).

    Absolutely no one I encounter in my day to day has ever heard of it; and that it could have as many as 6-7 Oscars noms plus possible BIG wins will boggle the minds of millions of viewers on Oscar day who are like, “what the Hell movie is this?”.

    Why isn’t this movie being re-released in a good 600-800 screens right now?

  • 27 1-18-2010 at 5:58 pm

    Chris138 said...

    They probably figure people will pick it up on DVD or Blu-ray since it came out last week.

    The Hurt Locker has something going against it, which is the fact that it’s an unpopular subject matter about an unpopular war that’s been going on since the last decade. Avatar is easy escapism for people, which is to it’s advantage. The Hurt Locker is a superior film, in my opinion, but I could see where people would go with Avatar instead.

    I can also see Inglourious Basterds doing well at the BAFTAs. Especially the way they re-wrote European history.

  • 28 1-18-2010 at 6:43 pm

    Craig said...

    JR: I agree with you completely about Bigelow’s direction.

  • 29 1-18-2010 at 7:47 pm

    Brian said...

    Judging by a lot of the reaction, I’m wondering if Cameron’s speeches hurt his and Avatar’s chances more than help. In contrast to Bigelow’s speeches the night before.

    I might be reading to much into it.

  • 30 1-18-2010 at 8:35 pm

    JR said...

    Well, Brian, as cited above (http://carpetbagger.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/01/18/the-250-million-underdog-celebrates/, his behavior can’t be helping, but the guy just doesn’t give a damn. His words about his ex-wife notwithstanding, Cameron really thinks he’s King of the World. He’s the anti-Scorsese.

    “Mr. Cameron, meanwhile, was holding court as only he can, by the bar, inside the restaurant, at banquettes, crowing about having the two top-grossing movies of all time (“Avatar” trails only “Titanic”). He posed for photos, brandishing his two Globes like happy daggers. When he finally sat down to eat, he grabbed a piece of steak with his bare hands, pausing only to watch a clip of his acceptance speech playing on a TV behind him.”

  • 31 1-18-2010 at 9:19 pm

    Patrick said...

    Kris, do you think Cameron can repeat at the Oscars? Is he really going to topple Bigalow?

  • 32 1-18-2010 at 10:05 pm

    Mimi Rogers said...

    What are the chances of Cameron and Bigalow rekindling their romance ala It’s Complicated on Oscar night?

  • 33 1-19-2010 at 2:27 am

    Glenn said...

    JR, I’m not sure what you’re talking about in regards to Scorsese’s film having good performances as opposed to Cameron’s? Have you ever seen Cameron movies? Sure, not as many great performances as Scorsese’s back catalogue, but his resume is much smaller and his films don’t necessarily lend themselves to great performances. That Cameron’s films have given us Sigourney Weaver in “Aliens”, Linda Hamilton in “Terminator 2”, Jamie Lee Curtis in “True Lies”, Kate Winslet in “Titanic” and Zoe Saldana in “Avatar” I’d say he’s doing a pretty good job in getting some good – dare I say ICONIC – performances out of people.

  • 34 1-19-2010 at 4:41 am

    Megan said...

    I wouldn’t say Kate Winslet in Titanic or Zoe Saldana in Avatar were iconic.

    Showing your titties does not an iconic performance make.

    Saldana did some great voice work, and I really loved her character, but it simply wasn’t one for the ages.

  • 35 1-19-2010 at 8:19 am

    Speaking English said...

    Do people really not understand that Cameron’s “king of the world” quip was just him quoting a memorable line from his movie? Is this really so difficult to grasp?

    Geeze, people just like seeing what they want to, huh?

  • 36 1-19-2010 at 1:52 pm

    JR said...

    Glenn, I’ve seen nearly all of Cameron’s films. I even enjoy them! He gets great actors for his films but fails to provide them with worthy scripts.

    Though I’ll be the first to say that some Scorsese films are more successful than others, Cameron has yet to give us anything close to Goodfellas: Ray Liotta, Robert de Niro, Joe Pesci, Lorraine Bracco, Dennis Farina, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Imperioli – all doing some of the best (in some cases, THE best) work of their lives.

    Speaking English, I’d like to think Cameron was simply joking. Still, I’d never approach him for an autograph: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dwUl9u5QW4