Notes from the Golden Globes night
LOS ANGELES—Ben Affleck stood from the sidelines and watched intently right before presenter Brie Larson announced the best actor-drama nominees. When she said, “And the Golden Globe goes to … Casey Affleck,” Ben clapped vigorously for his younger brother’s victory.
Meryl Streep wrote beforehand her moving, terrific acceptance speech so it was on the teleprompter. But the newly minted Cecil B. DeMille recipient knew her remarks from her heart and mind—she just glanced at the prompter occasionally.
Steve Carell and Kristen Wiig’s hilariously bleak introduction of the best animated picture nominees was among the show’s best and funniest moments, too, making the star-studded audience laugh several times.
Those were among the sidelights of the recent 74th Golden Globe Awards held at the International Ballroom of the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
Earlier in the day, we happened to be in the ballroom as the final rehearsal and preparations were underway. The opening clip—a first in the Golden Globes’ history, which usually does not have a big production number—was shown as part of the technical rehearsal.
When the clip—a big, joyous ode to “La La Land” and other nominees was over, even the waitstaff—who paused putting silverware on the tables bedecked with roses, and watched—clapped.
From our vantage point—right at the start of the red carpet, where the stars and nominees got off from their limos, Town Cars and SUVs, we had a
chance to see these talents primp before they face the phalanx of media from all over the world. It was that crucial minute to fix the décolletage or artfully show off those legs from daring slits.
For instance, the accessories of nominee Pharrell Williams, looking like a maharaja in white jacket (from the 2012 Paris Bombay Métiers d’Art show, according to Vogue), got tangled with the purse of his wife, Helen Lasichanh. So the couple had to untangle themselves before they proceeded to the media line.
Fil-Am Hailee Steinfeld arrived looking stunning in a flowing custom-made gown by Vera Wang. It was touching to see her dad, Peter Steinfeld, kneel down and arrange the sheer train of the gown of his daughter, a first-time Golden Globe nominee for “The Edge of Seventeen.”
Call it serendipity, but somehow, Hailee and her costars Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon in “True Grit” (which earned Hailee her first Oscar nomination at the age of 14) ended up together at the red carpet entrance. The three had a joyous minireunion.
The procession of stars was so fast-paced that it was almost a blur. But among the standouts were Naomi Campbell, Gwendoline Christie (at 6’3”, she’s always a towering presence in Hollywood events), Olivia Culpo, Lily Collins, Kerry Washington, Ruth Negga, Regina King, Natalie Portman, Emma Stone, Tracee Ellis Ross and Naomie Harris.
Standout couples were Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel, Natalie Portman (blooming in her pregnancy) and choreographer Benjamin Millepied, John Legend and Chrissy Teigen, Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban and Warren Beatty and Annette Bening—who looked the part as Hollywood’s royal couple. Mel Gibson came with his girlfriend, Rosalind Ross, who is also pregnant.
Stars heeded the admonition to come early this year, in time for the 5 p.m. start, so by 4:35 p.m., the screams from the fans in the bleachers started to die down as the last of the limos arrived. In previous years, the A-listers were still coming in even 5 minutes before showtime.
Once inside, Hollywood’s glitterati ate salad, filet mignon and roasted Chilean seabass, a trio of dessert, washed down with champagne, chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon.
There were several eloquent acceptance speeches, including Hugh Laurie, who ripped Republican lawmakers and President-elect Donald Trump.
Meryl Streep, in her by now viral acceptance speech upon receiving the Cecil B. DeMille Award, got the audience in the ballroom to be quiet. She got many misty-eyed, including Kerry Washington, with her powerful remarks criticizing Trump.
After that stunning speech, we somehow found the mood to attend the six after-parties, all within the Hilton’s premises. Past midnight, we finally loosened up and busted some dance moves.
Our guests this year were “Grimm” star Reggie Lee, Hollywood executive Fritz Friedman, LA-based singer actress Giji Kocher (formerly Djhoanna Garcia), actor-photographer Bryan Geli, publishers and show producers Norberto “Jojo” Reyes and Mildred Deang, and Doctor Jeffrey Krebs.
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