Grammy, Golden Globes: Storm Warning Over Covid-Weather Ceremonies

Posted on Jan 6, 2022, 1:38 p.m.Updated Jan 6, 2022, 3:56 PM

Faced with the pandemic and health requirements, major events in the world of cinema and music are struggling to maintain their programming. So stay the course or abandon the ship? This is the dilemma facing the organizers. As the Omicron variant wreaks havoc in the United States and around the world, the Grammys announced the postponement of the ceremony, usually awarding the most prestigious awards in the music industry at the start of the year.

“Given the uncertainty surrounding the Omicron variant, holding the ceremony on Jan. 31 is just too risky,” the Recording Academy and CBS broadcaster of the evening announced.

Billie Eilish, Lizzo Lil Nas X, and Finneas O’Connell at the 62nd Grammy Awards, January 26, 2020.Getty Images via AFP

The event which was yet to give pride of place to Doja Cat, Lil Nas X and Olivia Rodrigo, specifies that a later date will be announced “soon”. A new setback for the institution which had already postponed its televised edition last year, to better adapt it to health distancing measures.

A 100% virtual Sundance Festival

Also forced to bow to the threat of a much more contagious mutation than the previous ones, the Sundance festival which was to open on January 20 in Utah is forced to repeat the experience of an online edition.

“We don’t believe it is safe, or even feasible, to bring together thousands of artists, spectators, staff, volunteers and partners from around the world for an eleven-day festival as overwhelmed communities struggle to provide essential services. », Explains the festival committee, which had nevertheless worked on a hybrid edition to allow the event to continue under these conditions, in particular for the maintenance of question-and-answer sessions. The Sundance Festival, co-founded by actor Robert Redford and renowned for the quality of the films shown, is choosing an online version.

At the Golden Globes, the revolution will not be televised

And if the health crisis does not help the situation of the Golden Globes, the ceremony which usually brings together the gratin of Hollywood, is going through dark hours between pandemic and boycott. If the gala evening traditionally opened the film awards season, the stars have this year declined the invitation and the NBC television channel has for its part given up broadcasting the ceremony.

The 78th Golden Globes was held in Beverly Hills, California in 2021.

The 78th Golden Globes was held in Beverly Hills, California in 2021.AFP

Last May, around a hundred publicists complained to the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) – which is the jury for this award and whose role lacks transparency – to ask for an end at discriminatory and unprofessional behavior, ethical breaches and accusations of corruption ”.

Faced with insufficient reform and despite a 2021 edition that wanted to look good , Tom Cruise has returned his awards, and major studios such as Warner Bros., Netflix and Amazon have announced that they will no longer want to collaborate with the organization in the future. Big blow for the Golden Globes as Netflix productions now dominate the charts like “The Power of Dog” by Jane Campion or “The Lost Daughter” by Maggie Gyllenhaal, broadcast on the platform. The new edition will therefore be held without audience or television, on January 9.

Outdated ceremonies?

Pandemics and controversies aside, questions arise as to the future of such ceremonies. Last year, the Oscars, which are still scheduled for March 27, thrilled less than 10 million Americans.

So an outdated formula? If the Oscars continue to hold the bar in the stormy sea that is falling on the world of cinema, the Oscars ceremony of honor, which was to reward the actors Samuel L. Jackson, Danny Glover and the Norwegian Liv Ullmann, as well as artist Elaine May, for their entire career, will not be held in Los Angeles this year.

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Grammy, Golden Globes: Storm Warning Over Covid-Weather Ceremonies