After ‘The Martian’ collected Golden Globes as a comedy last year, rules changes are ahead for 2017 (Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/WireImage)
By Maane Khatchatourian, Variety
The Hollywood Foreign Press Association announced on Monday the date for the 74th annual Golden Globes, in addition to rule changes regarding awards eligibility.
The HFPA has tweaked its guidelines to distinguish between comedy and drama, in addition to changing rules about campaigning and advertising.
“Motion pictures shall be entered in the category that best matches the overall tone and content of the motion picture. Thus, for example, dramas with comedic overtones should be entered as dramas,” the HFPA said. A musical, meanwhile, is “a comedy or a drama in which songs are used in addition to spoken dialogue to further the plot.”
This means that Ridley Scott’s “The Martian,” which won best motion picture, musical or comedy at this year’s Golden Globe Awards, would likely be classified as a drama this year. Star Matt Damon also won best actor in the comedy or musical category, which was the butt of jokes throughout the ceremony.
HFPA members — foreign journalists based in Los Angeles — will vote whether or not to accept a submission in a given category; a 2/3 vote of the membership is required to change the submission to another category. A studio or publicist may request a determination from HFPA by Aug. 1 of the appropriate award categories for a motion picture or television program.
According to the new rules, HFPA members “should not be invited to and must not attend events (including parties, receptions, lunches and dinners and similar events) at which Golden Globe award nominees are present” in the period between the nomination announcement and final ballot submission.
Other rules ensure that members have not consulted or worked in any capacity for the eligible TV and film projects.
The 2017 ceremony — produced by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and Dick Clark Productions — will be held on Jan. 8, and air on NBC at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT live from the Beverly Hilton.
Here are the rule changes:
- Defining the drama/comedy distinction
- Defining “original score” and specifying who should receive that award
- Specifying who should receive the screenplay award
- Providing procedures for determining whether motion pictures meet the “foreign language” requirements
- Changing the foreign language motion picture eligibility period to a 15-month period to coincide with the Academy’s eligibility period
- Specifying that qualifying motion picture screenings may not be held at HFPA offices
- Changing the requirement of screeners (in addition to screenings) for foreign language motion pictures to a strong recommendation
- Revising the distinction between motion picture and television categories to recognize the development of pay-per-view television series
- Including a reference to “special” Golden Globe awards (already provided for in the bylaws)
- Providing more details on the reminders list process and specifying our use of the 2/3 rule to overturn a studio’s category submission
- Providing for a blackout period when studios and publicists may not lobby HFPA members about award classification issues
- Allowing for advance determinations of categories upon request in August each year
- Including the rule against inviting members to events with nominees during the period after the nominations are announced
- Providing rules for advertisements referring to the Golden Globes
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