Freedom of expression and diversity were prominent themes at a Golden Globes 2019 ceremony on Sunday night (Jan 6) that contained a couple of major film upsets, a solitary win for A Star Is Born, and a shut-out for Mary Poppins Returns.
Read more: Full list of Golden Globes 2019 winners
Best dramatic actor winner and Bohemian Rhapsody star Rami Malek prevailed over Bradley Cooper from A Star Is Born, and thanked the late Queen frontman and inspiration for the film, Freddie Mercury, as well as attending Queen band members Brian May and Roger Taylor. “Thank you for ensuring that authenticity and inclusivity exist in the music and in the world and in all of us,” Malek said to May and Taylor. “Thank you to Freddie Mercury for giving me the joy of a lifetime. I love you, you beautiful man. This is for and because of you, gorgeous.”
While many had predicted Malek’s win, what came next was a shock as Fox and New Regency’s Bohemian Rhapsody beat A Star Is Born to the best dramatic film prize. British producer Graham King, the former Martin Scorsese collaborator who has returned spectacularly with his biggest commercial and critical hit in years (Bohemian Rhapsody will cross $750m at the global box office this week), walked on stage to accept the award for best drama to round out the 76th Golden Globes at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
Warner Bros’ A Star Is Born began the night with five nominations and had been expected to claim the honour however, after Cooper and Lady Gaga both lost out in the acting contests, the film had to settle for one win for ‘Shallow’ in the best original song category. Disney’s Mary Poppins Returns started the night on four nods and left empty-handed.
Perhaps the biggest film shock of the night in the film categories came when Glenn Close was named best dramatic actress for SPC’s The Wife. Close, who had never won a film Globe until now, looked more surprised than anybody when her name was read out. She delivered a heartfelt speech that brought the audience to its feet when she urged women to follow their dreams and noted how her mother had “sublimated” herself to her husband and was in her 80s when she told Close she felt she had not accomplished anything in life.
Alfonso Cuarón enjoyed a triumphant night, collecting best director and best foreign language film for ROMA. The Mexican auteur drew applause when he said, “Cinema at its best, builds bridges to other cultures.” Two wins for ROMA, distributed by Netflix, and three for Green Book (best film –comedy or musical, supporting actor, screenplay) distributed by Universal, capped a fine night for producer-financier Participant Media.
Green Book director Peter Farrelly noted how the story of jazz pianist Don Shirley and his Italian-American driver who put their different backgrounds to one side and become friends during a concert tour of the Deep South in the 1960s could serve as inspiration for a more tolerant society. The film drew controversy after the family of Shirley claimed it did not accurately depict events in his life.
The film’s Mahershala Ali was named best supporting actor and If Beale Street Could Talk star Regina King won best supporting actress. King vowed that in the next two years everything she produces will be “50 percent women.”
Olivia Colman, named best actress in a comedy or musical for The Favourite, gave thanks to her “bitches”, in reference to her co-stars Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz.
Christian Bale uttered the most intriguing words when the Vice star thanked “Satan” in accepting his best comedy or musical actor award for portraying former US vice president Dick Cheney in Vice. “Thank you to Satan for giving me inspiration for playing this role,” said the British actor.