- The Hollywood Foreign Press Association has faced criticism for its lack of diversity.
- The HFPA’s plans to increase diversity levels in its membership have been met with skepticism.
- Matt Damon is the latest celebrity to address the Golden Globes controversy.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Matt Damon has become the latest Hollywood A-lister to address the Golden Globes controversy, following in the footsteps of Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo, and Tom Cruise.
The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), the organizing body that hands out the Globes, is facing intense scrutiny over its lack of diversity, while celebrities have voiced their skepticism over the organisation’s attempted reforms.
Now, two-time Golden Globe winner Damon has added his voice to the issue. In an interview with Hoda Kotb and Savannah Guthrie on Tuesday’s “Today Show,” Damon said: “If [the Globes] go away, I don’t think anybody’s really going to lament that,” he said.
“I don’t think the world needs to mourn the death of an awards show,” Damon added.
The Globes were first criticized for a lack of diversity among this year’s nominations, where works like “I May Destroy You” and “Da 5 Bloods” were snubbed. An LA Times exposé then revealed that there were no Black members in the HFPA at all.
-Ava DuVernay (@ava) March 7, 2021
The HFPA said in a statement that it wants to recruit 20 new members this year, with a specific focus on Black membership, while over the next 18 months it wants to increase membership by 50% with a goal of recruiting from underrepresented groups.
However, these plans were met with skepticism and further criticism. Netflix, Amazon, and WarnerMedia severed ties with the HFPA, while NBC said that they will not air the Golden Globes in 2022.
-shonda rhimes (@shondarhimes) May 8, 2021
A number of high-profile celebrities began to speak out and take action against the HFPA, with MCU actors Scarlett Johansson and Mark Rufflo both releasing statements.
Ruffalo wrote that it was “discouraging to see the HFPA, which has gained prominence and profited handsomely from their involvement with filmmakers and actors, resist the change that is being asked of them from many of the groups that have been most disenfranchised by their culture of secrecy and exclusion.”
Ruffalo, who won a Globe this year for his performance in HBO’s “I Know This Much is True,” continued: “Now is the time to step up and right the wrongs of the past.”
-Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) May 8, 2021
Johansson, a four-time Golden Globe nominee, urged Hollywood to “take a step back” from the HFPA, explaining why she doesn’t take part in HFPA press events.
“As an actor promoting a film, one is expected to participate in awards season by attending press conferences as well as awards shows,” Johansson said. “In the past, this has often meant facing sexist questions and remarks by certain HFPA members that bordered on sexual harassment. It is the exact reason why I, for many years, refused to participate in their conferences.”
Meanwhile, Tom Cruise returned his three Golden Globe awards to the organization. He had previously won two best actor awards for “Jerry Maguire” and “Born on the Fourth of July,” and a best supporting actor award for “Magnolia.”