Meanwhile, Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood” won three trophies — the most of any film or TV show — including best movie comedy/musical and a supporting actor prize for Brad Pitt. Here are 15 more things you missed from the telecast, which clocked in at just over three hours.
1) Ricky Gervais’s monologue
This was Gervais’s fifth time hosting the show, and yes, he tried his best to be very controversial while also proclaiming how little he cared about the whole show and Hollywood in general. He called out Hollywood hypocrisy (“If ISIS started a streaming service, you’d call your agent”); problematic executives (“They’re all terrified of Ronan Farrow”); and the absence of people of color in the nominations (“The Hollywood Foreign Press are all very, very racist”). Gervais also made a joke about Judi Dench that was too raunchy to air on TV, though it had something to do with the disaster that was “Cats.” (He also made a lot of jokes about “Cats.”)
2) Tom Hanks broke down. Twice.
The actor announced that he had a cold when he hopped on stage to receive the prestigious Cecil B. DeMille Award, and his voice did sound a little hoarse (plus the cameras caught him waving around what looked like a bag of powdered vitamins, such as Emergen-C, earlier in the evening). But he also jokingly used his cold to cover when he became choked up during his speech — twice.
The first time came as he began speaking about his family: “A man is blessed with a family sitting down in front like that. A wife who is fantastic in every way, who has taught me what love is. Five kids who are braver and stronger and wiser than their old man is. And a loving group of people who have put up with me being away for months and months and months at a time. I can’t tell you how much your love means to me.”
The second time came as he reflected on his career at the end of his speech. “It’s the cold that is making this happen,” he said through tears. “I swear to God I’m not this emotional at home. Thank you, HFPA. Thank you all here. Thank you all for your inspiration and all of your work and all of the struggle that you guys all go through in order to hit the marks and tell the truth.”
3) Michelle Williams gave a powerful speech about reproductive rights
Williams, who won best actress in a limited series or TV movie for “Fosse/Verdon,” is known for giving poignant and well-written speeches. This time, she connected the award she held in her hand with how it served as an acknowledgment for all of the choices she has made, both as an actor and as a person.
She referenced her own history with reproduction: “I’m also grateful to have lived at a moment in our society where choice exists because as women and as girls, things can happen to our bodies that are not our choice. I’ve tried my very best to live a life of my own making, not just a series of events that happened to me, but one that I could stand back and look at and recognize my handwriting all over … and I wouldn’t have been able to do this without employing a woman’s right to choose.”
As presenter Tiffany Haddish, who stood nearby, yelled “preach!”, Williams continued: “To choose when to have my children and with whom, when I felt supported and able to balance our lives knowing as all mothers know the scales must and will tip towards our children.”
Williams said: “I know my choices may look different than yours, but thank God or whomever you pray to that we live in a country founded on the principle that I am free to live by my faith, and you’re free to live by yours.” She closed by imploring all women to vote “in your own self-interest.”
“It’s what men have been doing for years, which is why the world looks so much like them,” she said. “But don’t forget we are the largest voting body in this country. Let’s make it look more like us.”
4) Ramy Youssef made fun of Ricky Gervais’s thank-you rules by thanking God
Ramy Youssef won the very first award of the night, coming just after host Gervais tried to scare celebrities from using their acceptance speeches as platforms for airing their political beliefs. “If you win, come up, accept your little award, thank your agent and your God, and [bleep],” Gervais said.
Then Youssef won best actor in a TV series, musical or comedy for Hulu’s “Ramy,” and began his speech by saying “I would like to thank my God. Allahu akbar, thank you, God. This is thanks to God — and Hulu. And look, I know you guys haven’t seen my show. Everyone’s like, ‘Is this an editor?’ ”
“Ramy” is a show about an Egyptian Muslim family living in New Jersey, and the titular character grapples with spirituality, faith and God, but does count himself a believer, as does the real-life Youssef. Backstage, Youssef said his comment was sincere. “I was going to say it anyway. I am very thankful to God and my show is about someone who believes in their faith, so I naturally don’t always feel like I’m on the same page with the comedic stylings of Ricky Gervais on that subject.” But, he added, he thought Gervais’s Jeffrey Epstein joke was funny.
He also thanked his mom — who, by the way, was rooting for Michael Douglas. “Egyptians love Michael Douglas,” Youssef said.
5) Kate McKinnon’s moving tribute to Ellen DeGeneres
“Saturday Night Live” star Kate McKinnon had the duty of introducing Ellen DeGeneres and presenting her with the Carol Burnett Award for Achievement in Television (a new prize that Burnett herself won last year). But in between jokes about the clothes McKinnon has received from DeGeneres, the comedian got choked up as she described the impact of seeing DeGeneres come out on her sitcom in 1997.
“When Ellen’s sitcom was at the height of its popularity I was in my mother’s basement, lifting weights in front of the mirror thinking, ‘Am I … gay?’ And I was. And I still am,” McKinnon said. “But that’s a very scary thing to suddenly know about yourself. It’s sort of like doing 23andMe and discovering that you have alien DNA, and the only thing that made it less scary was seeing Ellen on TV. She risked her entire life, and her entire career, in order to tell the truth and she suffered greatly for it.”
6) Patricia Arquette made a rare reference to Iran
Patricia Arquette, who won best supporting actress in a TV drama for Hulu’s “The Act,” is known for making political acceptance speeches, and Sunday night was no exception. Arquette was one of very few people to reference the U.S. airstrike that killed an Iranian military leader on Thursday, and perhaps the only one to note how the conflict could affect the lives of people living outside the United States.
“We’re not going to look back on this night in the history books,” she said. “We will see a country on the brink of war, the United States of America; a president tweeting out a threat of 52 bombs, including cultural sites; young people risking their lives, traveling the world; people not knowing if bombs are going to drop on their kids’ heads. And the continent of Australia on fire.
“So while I love my kids so much, I beg of us all to give them a better world. For our kids and their kids, we have to vote in 2020, and we have to beg and plead for everyone we know to vote in 2020.”
7) Multiple celebrities urged people to help Australia
In what may have been considered a more “safe” current event to bring up, multiple A-listers implored viewers to donate to Australia in the wake of the horrific wildfires. Many also linked the tragedy to climate change: “When one country faces a climate disaster, we all face a climate disaster, we’re all in it together,” Australia native Cate Blanchett said, also thanking the volunteer firefighters.
Russell Crowe won best actor in a limited series or TV movie for playing Roger Ailes in “The Loudest Voice,” and skipped the ceremony because he was trying to keep his family safe in his native country. Instead, presenter Jennifer Aniston read a statement from him: “The tragedy unfolding in Australia is climate change-based. We need to act based on science, move our global workforce to renewable energy and respect our planet for the unique and amazing place it is. That way, we all have a future.”
8) Beyoncé and Jay-Z arrived late, J-Lo and A-Rod left early
Attendees caught Beyoncé and Jay-Z sneaking into the ceremony late, but they stayed for a while. Sadly for them, Queen Bey’s nominated track (“Spirit” from “The Lion King”) lost to Elton John and Bernie Taupin’s “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again” from the Elton biopic “Rocketman” in the original song category. The first A-list couple spotted leaving the show early? Jennifer Lopez and her fiance Alex Rodriguez, who departed after Lopez (“Hustlers”) lost out on best supporting actress in a motion picture to Laura Dern (“Marriage Story”).
9) ‘Parasite’ director Bong Joon Ho told everyone to start reading
While accepting the foreign language film award for “Parasite,” South Korean director Bong Joon Ho urged audience members and viewers at home to expand their horizons beyond the English-language realm. “Once you overcome the one-inch-tall barrier of subtitles, you will be introduced to so many more amazing films,” he said with the help of an interpreter, later adding in English: “I think we use only just one language: the cinema.”
“Parasite,” a darkly comedic thriller about a poor family infiltrating a wealthy household, has performed exceedingly well throughout this award season and is poised to land South Korea its first-ever foreign language film nomination — and perhaps its first-ever win — at the Oscars next month.
10) Netflix — “The Irishman” and “Marriage Story” along with it — had a tough, tough night
The powers that be at Netflix wanted to dominate the films categories this awards season, evidenced by the production of four movies that could all easily be considered “awards bait”: “The Irishman,” “Marriage Story,” “Dolemite is My Name” and “The Two Popes.” The streaming service earned an impressive 17 Golden Globe nominations for its movies and won … one of them (Laura Dern for best supporting actress in a drama for “Marriage Story”). Shockingly, it didn’t do that much better on the TV side of things, which is usually its bread and butter. Netflix also earned 17 nominations here and only ended up with one win (Olivia Colman for best actress in a TV drama in “The Crown”).
It’s too early to say if this means anything in the long term, but it does present a potentially rocky road to the Oscars for Martin Scorsese’s Al Pacino-, Joe Pesci- and Robert De Niro-starring gangster epic “The Irishman,” which was completely shut out, and Noah Baumbach’s Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson vehicle, “Marriage Story.”
11) Phoebe Waller-Bridge made a racy joke about Barack Obama
“Fleabag” followed its Emmys sweep in September by taking home Golden Globes for both best TV series, musical or comedy and best actress in a TV series, musical or comedy. Creator Phoebe Waller-Bridge used her second acceptance to make a joke about former president Barack Obama’s year-end list of his favorite films and television series, pointing out — as many have done online — the amusing inclusion of “Fleabag’s” second season. (For those who haven’t seen the show, the first season features a scene where Waller-Bridge’s character pleasures herself while watching a video of Obama giving a speech.)
“Personally, I would like to also thank Obama for putting us on his list,” Waller-Bridge said. “As some of you may know, he’s always been on mine.”
12) Brad Pitt poked fun at ‘Titanic’
While accepting the best supporting actor award for “Once Upon a Time … In Hollywood,” Pitt thanked his “partner in crime, LDC.” (That’s Leonardo DiCaprio to us plebes.)
“Before ‘The Revenant,’ I used to watch, year after year, his co-stars accept awards and get up and thank him profusely,” Pitt said. “I know why: He’s an all-star. He’s a gent. I wouldn’t be here without you, man. I thank you.”
But no discussion of DiCaprio’s oeuvre is complete without a reference to “Titanic,” of course. Pitt poked fun of the fact that, as Internet memes have pointed out for years, Jack didn’t have to freeze in the Atlantic Ocean because there was definitely room for him on the door Rose uses to stay alive. Flubbing the reference a bit, Pitt concluded, “Still, I would’ve shared the raft.”
13) Sacha Baron Cohen took aim at Mark Zuckerberg … again
Comedian and satirist Sacha Baron Cohen has been waging a small war against social media. In a recent speech at the Anti-Defamation League’s “Never Is Now” summit, he called such companies “a sewer of bigotry and vile conspiracy theories” and took particular aim at Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg for not better policing misinformation on his website. So it comes as no surprise that, when introducing “JoJo Rabbit,” he made a little quip at the billionaire’s expense.
“The hero of this next movie is a naive, misguided child who spreads Nazi propaganda and only has imaginary friends. His name is Mark Zuckerberg,” Cohen said, before pretending he misspoke. “Sorry, sorry, this is an old intro to ‘The Social Network.’”
14) Awkwafina’s dad should be proud
Awkwafina (also known as Nora Lum), started out as a rapper before she turned to acting, and the pursuit has proven successful: Her much-acclaimed role in the movie “The Farewell” won her a Golden Globe for best actress in a movie, musical or comedy. The actress apparently is the first woman of Asian descent to win the award, according to the Los Angeles Times. “I actually just heard that fact, and it was pretty mind-blowing,” she said backstage at the ceremony.
Like any good daughter, Awkwafina thought of those who raised her when accepting the prize. “I’d like to dedicate this to my dad, Wally. I told you I’d get a job, Dad.”
Then on a more heartfelt note, she added that the dedication went to “my grandma, my best friend, the woman who raised me, and to my mother, Tia, who I always hoped was watching from somewhere above and I hope that she’s watching now.”
15) Renée Zellweger and Joaquin Phoenix give oddly meandering speeches
Perhaps something was in the water, because both winners of best actor and best actress in a dramatic motion picture gave bizarre, meandering speeches that seemed to confuse many of the viewers at home.
Zellweger, who won for playing Judy Garland in “Judy,” gave the traditional thanks and made some jokes about how it’s been 17 years since she won a Golden Globe before saying, “The top doesn’t matter. It’s the journey that matters. And the work that matters.” She then proceeded to continue thanking people who worked on the film, until the music began playing her off while she quickly reflected on Garland.
While her speech felt slightly comatose, Phoenix’s curse-riddled speech could better be described as “slightly unhinged.” He covered a variety of topics, including: his veganism and praise for the HFPA for serving a plant-based menu; how there’s not actual competition among actors; his intimidation about reaching out to fellow nominee Christian Bale, even though they share an agent; thanking director Todd Phillips, who helmed “Joker”; admitting he’s not always been a “virtuous man”; and (finally) saying, “It’s really nice that so many people have come up and sent well wishes to Australia, but we have to do more than that,” suggesting that movie stars don’t need to take private jets to Palm Springs. Whew!