NBC: Golden Globes Still a Go
Los Angeles (E! Online) – Will the ongoing writers’ strike take some of the glow off this year’s Golden Globes? Not if NBC has anything to say about it.
The Peacock confirmed Monday it will proceed with airing the 65th annual installment of the pre-Oscar kudofest live from Los Angeles as planned on Jan. 13ódespite the threat of picketing from the Writers Guild of America and fears that many of the nominated stars might not show up out of solidarity to striking scribes.
The latter possibility has sparked speculation that NBC and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association would scotch the ceremony to avoid damaging the show’s credibility and the telecast’s viability. The Globes’ usual star-drawing power makes it a ratings success.
The WGA has refused to grant the Globes a strike waiver. Speaking to the New York Times over the weekend, WGA strike coordinator Jeff Hermanson said the guild would position strikers along the sidewalks around the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
“If the Globes is telecast and it is produced by Dick Clark Productions, which is a struck company, we will picket the show,” Hermanson said.
Such actions, of course, would likely prevent A-listers from attending, concerned that an appearance might garner them negative publicity as strikebusters. Publicists for many stars say their clients have already signaled they wouldn’t turn out for any struck productions.
Further complicating matters is the Screen Actors Guild’s own potential work action against networks and studios. SAG’s current deal expires in June, and actors have threatened to follow the WGA and strike if their demands for a larger share of payments related to new-media growth are not met.
The Times quoted several unnamed insiders saying the Foreign Press Association has begun exploring ways to ensure nominees such as Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, Keira Knightley, Denzel Washington, Katherine Heigl and George Clooney make the scene without incurring any sort of public backlash or embarrassment.
Among the ideas bandied about: nixing the dinner and trophy fest in favor of a Webcast or a private affair, the organization’s first since 1979.
Already, CBS and producers of the Jan. 8 People’s Choice Awards have decided to tweak the format to avoid any hassles with picketing scribes
The network announced last week that instead of airing live this year, the People’s Choice Awards will do away with the traditional red carpet and ceremony and instead tape segments ahead of time in a magazine format hosted by Queen Latifah.
But a rep for NBC told E! Online Monday that the Globes “show will go on” as scheduled and declined to talk contingency plans. The network continues to run promos for the event, touting the glittery nominee slate.
Jorge Camara, president of the HFPA, says there is no intention of canceling the event.
Globes organizers aren’t the only ones with strike issues.
Producers for the late-night shows are scrambling to fill guest slots, as the shows are set to come back over the next few days.
NBC’s Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Late Night with Conan O’Brien, along with ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live will air fresh episodes starting Wednesday without the benefit of their writers. That means each show will likely depend on its host’s improvisational skills, pretaped bits from the field (generated by producers, not scribes), more musical guests and extended interviews.
The same will apply to Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, who’ll be returning to their respective anchor desks on The Daily Show and The Colbert Report Jan. 7 sans scribes.
“I expect these shows to have a much harder time booking guests,” WGA East spokesman Sherry Goldman told USA Today. “We’d hope they’d honor the picket line and respect the fact that it’s a struck show.”
Leno’s first guest Wednesday will be a political figure, Republican presidential candidate and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee. No word yet on guests for O’Brien and Kimmel’s shows.
CBS will fare a bit better. Since David Letterman’s Worldwide Pants Productions wholly owns The Late Show and The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson, he was able to strike a separate deal with the Writers Guild, allowing both of those programs to retain their writing staffs when they resume broadcasting this week.
Letterman not only gets to do a WGA-approved monologue Wednesday, he has lined up Robin Williams as well as country star Shooter Jennings. Bill Maher, Juno star Ellen Page and the cast of Broadway’s Young Frankenstein will appear on Thursday’s show, while Donald Trump and Lupe Fiasco will be the featured guests for Friday.
The season for self congratulations is upon us!! I LOVE IT!!!
NBC: Golden Globes Still a Go