Why Brendan Fraser Will Skip the 2023 Golden Globes Despite Being Nominated

<span class="caption">Why Brendan Fraser Will Skip the Globes This Year</span><span class="photo-credit">Taylor Hill - Getty Images</span>
Why Brendan Fraser Will Skip the Globes This YearTaylor Hill - Getty Images

Darren Aronofsky’s The Whale debuted just a few weeks ago, but IRL, the film has been making a splash since last summer when it premiered at the 2022 Venice Film Festival. For months, the movie’s lead Brendan Fraser has received career-best reviews for his role in the psychological drama and has swiftly become one of the frontrunners of this year’s awards season...but don’t expect him to be in attendance at the 2023 Golden Globes next week.

During his latest cover story for GQ in November, the actor revealed that he will not attend the Golden Globes ceremony this month should he be nominated. (Surprise: He was.) “I have more history with the Hollywood Foreign Press Association than I have respect for the Hollywood Foreign Press Association,” he admitted. “No, I will not participate.” The admission was anything but shocking for those who have followed Brendan’s longstanding career—both the highs and the lows. “It’s because of the history that I have with them. And my mother didn’t raise a hypocrite,” he added. “You can call me a lot of things, but not that.”

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The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) is the nonprofit org that gives out the Globes. Years ago during another interview with GQ, the actor said Philip Berk—who was president of the HFPA at the time—groped him as they were leaving a luncheon and derailed his career in the aftermath. (Philip has denied the assault ever happened to the New York Times.) According to Brendan, it all left him feeling nothing short of “ill.” “I felt like a little kid. I felt like there was a ball in my throat. I thought I was going to cry,” he continued. After the incident, Brendan proceeded to speak with an independent investigator before going public with what happened to him.

Shortly after, a follow-up story was published by GQ in which Brendan said the HFPA had completed an internal investigation and proposed he and Philip issue a joint statement downplaying the alleged assault as “intended to be taken as a joke and not as a sexual advance.” Brendan refused to sign it.

<span class="photo-credit">Taylor Hill - Getty Images</span>
Taylor Hill - Getty Images

Philip remained a voting member of the HFPA until April 2021, when he was expelled for sharing an article describing Black Lives Matter as a “racist hate movement” in an email to other members. That same year, the Los Angeles Times *also* found that the HFPA had no Black voting members and a “long and often scandal-ridden history, which includes fresh allegations of self-dealing and ethical lapses.” In May 2021, NBC subsequently dropped plans to broadcast the 2022 show. (Then in September 2022, NBC and the HFPA reached a one-year deal to return the 2023 Golden Globes to television.)

In November 2022, the HFPA unveiled a list of reforms to “change its structure from top to bottom” that included having “people of color involved in decision-making throughout the organization,” requiring members to undergo sexual harassment training, and adding “21 new and predominantly diverse journalists” to the HFPA.

But Brendan isn’t buying it and maintains in his November 2022 GQ interview that he isn’t so sure he believes in those reforms “at the moment.” “Maybe time will tell if they’re going to….I don’t know what they’re going to do. I don’t know.”

Aside from this one particular awards ceremony, the actor reiterated that he fully plans to advocate and campaign for The Whale in every other respect: “I owe it to myself. I owe it to the filmmakers. I know I owe it to those fans who paid to come and see me and stand in line in the sun and, you know, all of that. I owe it to my kids. This is my shot.”

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