This morning an official release came from NBC that it will not be broadcasting The Golden Globes telecast in 2022. The network made the announcement in the wake of a series of stories about the lack of diversity in the ranks of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the controversial group behind the Golden Globes. As I wrote in February, they have an internal payola network that operates on a level seen by the likes of The Lincoln Project. But grift and industry favoritism has long been a tolerated vice with this outfit.
Things started going poorly on the eve of this year's broadcast when the group was highlighted as having no black members whatsoever. This led to a string of reactions from numerous fronts in the entertainment complex. After some failed on-stage bandaid comments a call from within the HFPA was made to begin fixing the issues. However, a pair of prominent names brought in to repair things last month ended as both walked out on their commitment, as did a PR firm in contract with the HFPA.
This past weekend a number of studios came together to announce they were severing ties with the organization en masse. Netflix, Warners Brothers, and Amazon all released formal statements that they will no longer work with the organization until major reforms take place. In the midst of this flurry of professional ties being severed, NBC weighed in stating that it, too, will no longer be partnering:
“We continue to believe that the HFPA is committed to meaningful reform. However, change of this magnitude takes time and work, and we feel strongly that the HFPA needs time to do it right.”
NBC had signed an eight-year contract with the HFPA to broadcast the awards show annually, the first of the Hollywood awards season, and one that is seen as vital to launching an Oscar campaign for studios. It is not known how this affects the annual payout to the group for those rights, estimated to run about $60 million.
But seriously, NBC must be grateful if it can get out from under these dismal television events. A rather ghastly chart sums up all the reasons needed for them to cut ties.
It is an astounding condemnation of the entertainment industry to see this level of apathy from audiences. When all four of the most prominent entertainment awards broadcasts — the Oscars, Emmys, Grammys, and Golden Globes — ALL clock in with under 10 million viewers each, that is more than a problem. That is a rebuke.
Given all of the industry responses the HFPA has endured in recent days it seems fitting that NBC would be taking this stand, but you cannot help but think it is also a sense of relief being felt at the network. Considering those horrid returns in recent years this was an easier decision for NBC to make than some might think.