October 9, 2011

Golden Globe History by Andy Mccarthy

Every year since 1944, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has presented the Golden Globe Awards in recognition of excellence within the film and television entertainment industry on an international scale. The first Golden Globe Awards ceremony took place in Los Angeles, at the 20th Century Fox studios. Since 1961, the awards ceremony has been held in Beverly Hills, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. The ceremony usually takes place in January, before the Academy Awards.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association was founded during World War II, when eight Los Angeles-based journalists stationed around the world became committed to overcoming the difficulty of overseas communication in the midst of war by sharing information and contacts to keep audiences and filmmakers satisfied when it came to their desire for escape through film entertainment. In 1943, the journalists began as the Hollywood Foreign Correspondents Association, during a time when the film industry had yet to grasp the significance of foreign markets. The group felt an obligation to provide audiences with their judgments regarding Hollywood's most notable productions, and from that notion, the Golden Globe Awards were born, starting with an informal ceremony in 1944 at the 20th Century Fox studios, at which Paul Lukas was honored as Best Actor for his role in Watch on the Rhine," and Jennifer Jones was honored as Best Actress for her role in The Song of Bernadette, that year's Best Film.

Currently, HFPA members interview hundreds of producers, directors, writers, and actors; make reports from film sets, attend film festivals around the world, and view over 300 films each year. Every member is accredited by the Motion Picture Association of America, and each year, a maximum of five new journalists may gain admission into the organization.

In 1950, the Hollywood Foreign Correspondents Association split off into a second sect called the Foreign Press Association of Hollywood, due to member conflicts arising from differences in philosophy. Initially, the organizations coexisted, the former distributing the Golden Globes, and the latter distributing awards called Henriettas (named after Henry Gris, president of the Foreign Press Association).

The third most viewed awards show telecast each year, the Golden Globes are broadcast in over 150 countries. From 1958 to 1963, they were only broadcast locally, to the Los Angeles area. In 1965, the awards began its national broadcast, that year and the next as a special segment of the Andy Williams Show. In 2008, because the Writers Guild of America was on strike, its members from the writing community and its supporters from the acting community had threatened to boycott the Golden Globes, not wanting to diminish solidarity by crossing the WGA picket lines. For this reason, the 65th Golden Globe Awards was the one ceremony since 1958 that did not air live. Instead, the Hollywood Foreign Press lifted restrictions on media coverage of the awards - which was usually granted exclusively to NBC - and rather than hold the usual lengthy and elaborate ceremony at the Beverly Hilton, they would conduct a half hour long press conference there to announce that year's winners. The remaining hours that NBC usually set aside for broadcasting the ceremony and its related programming, were dedicated to announcements made by the hosts of Access Hollywood, then a special edition of Dateline featuring clips from the year's nominated films, interviews with some of the nominees, and commentary from various celebrities.

From its inception, the Golden Globes distributed were in the form of scrolls, rather than crystal awards or the golden globes distributed to winners today. It was not until the next year that the Association held a contest for which the winner would be the award designer who developed a statuette design that would best reflect the overarching goals of their organization. The organization's president, Marina Cisternas, came up with the winning design: a golden globe mounted on a pedestal, and encircled by a film strip.

About the Author

Andy has over 10 years experience in the promotional product field, with a focus on crystal awards.


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