The Golden Globes are tonight, and while I will do my traditional live blog during the show, I thought this year I would also throw out some predictions. Predicting the Globes can be tricky because, well, they are so damn weird. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) has only like 90 members in it who solely decide the winners, and when you only have to appeal to such a small group (or to put it another way, when there’s only 90 people to suck up to), things get a bit wonky. That’s why there isn’t really a reason to go all that deep into what I think will win tonight. Still, the actual winners on the movie side of things do offer a helpful predictor for the Oscars, simply because it is the first truly big award show to offer up any kind of winner. Plus, recently the HFPA has wanted to stay relevant, so it doesn’t go as clearly off the beaten path with film as the Globes sometimes do on the TV side. So let’s have a bit of fun, and pick away.
Best Picture, Drama nominees
Hell or High Water
Manchester by the Sea
Will Win: Moonlight
Dark Horse: Hacksaw Ridge
- This is a two-horse race between Moonlight and Manchester by the Sea. These films and La La Land (which will win the other Best Picture Globe, more than likely) have dominated the entire awards cycle and there is no reason to think that will change tonight. The only real wrinkle is that the HFPA has historically been a big fan of Mel Gibson, through all the ups and downs of his career, so let’s just say that it isn’t too much of a stretch to think that the HFPA could be swayed into doing something really silly–especially given the fact that, by all accounts, the group really likes Hacksaw Ridge. Still I really can’t see that happening. Like I said in my intro, the HFPA actually likes being taken somewhat seriously, and a left field pick like Hacksaw would basically destroy what was left of the group’s credibility.
- So back to the real competition. Manchester seems to have a lot of love from the HFPA, and the bigger stars of the two movies, which gives it a couple of advantages, but Moonlight feels like one of those movies that basically everyone agrees is really good and seems primed to win. Plus, Barry Jenkins and really the whole cast of Moonlight have that shiny and new feeling the HFPA loves so much. It’s a tough call, but I am going to go with Moonlight–the sad slog of watching Manchester could turn off just enough voters to help Moonlight eek out the win. I have no confidence in this pick at all, though, so if Manchester does win (or hell, if there is somehow a tie) it would not surprise me at all.
Best Picture, Comedy or Musical nominees
20th Century Women
Florence Foster Jenkins
La La Land
Will Win: La La Land
Dark Horse: Umm, all four of the other movies, but sure, ummm… Deadpool, why not?
- While the Drama category is a bit crowded and hard to predict, this category is far easier. Unless the HFPA just really hates La La Land, this should be a lock. Considering La La Land is the kind of film the HFPA generally likes and Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone will without question be out charming the pants off the HFPA, this category might as well just give La La Land the trophy now, and give the rest happy to be here consolation prizes. If for some reason the HFPA just decides they want to derail La La Land‘s award momentum in favor of one of the Drama category movies, I guess Deadpool could win, as the most out there choice possible.
Best Director nominees
Damien Chazelle, La La Land
Tom Ford, Nocturnal Animals
Mel Gibson, Hacksaw Ridge
Barry Jenkins, Moonlight
Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea
Will Win: Damien Chazelle
Dark Horse: Mel Gibson
- This also feels like a two-horse race, except this time between Chazelle and Jenkins. Though I could see anyone winning in this category, other than Ford. Gibson has a chance for the same reason that Hacksaw could win Best Drama. Lonergan if Manchester turns out to be so beloved by the HFPA that it sweeps. Jenkins because he has mostly looked like the frontrunner through most of the awards season, even if only by a slight amount. Chazelle because La La Land has the most momentum of any movie right now. It is very possible that whoever wins between Jenkins and Chazelle could tip the scale between which of their respective films has the advantage going out of the Globes, and right now it just feels like this is shaping in Chazelle’s direction because La La Land is already set up to win so much, and because it has the right star alignment to schmooze the room in a way that Moonlight doesn’t. Still, in all honestly, this is the race that will really tell us who should be the favorite going forward. Considering how split things have been so far, Chazelle and Jenkins should really just be considered a coin flip.
Best Actor, Drama nominees
Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea
Joel Edgerton, Loving
Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge
Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic
Denzel Washington, Fences
Will Win: Casey Affleck
Dark Horse: Denzel Washington
- Ahh, an easy one. Affleck seems well on his way to a sweep of the awards season, and it is entirely deserved from a performance perspective. The only thing I can see stopping him is if the HFPA is turned off by the various allegations of sexual assault that have emerged about him, which haven’t seemed to have any impact at all yet (and whether they should or shouldn’t I am so not getting into). If something did happen, Denzel could step in for the win because the HFPA loves him, and he is Denzel. That, or Garfield could win if the HFPA just goes all in on Hacksaw because they simply decide their love for Mel Gibson is more important than being worth talking about ever again.
Best Actress, Drama nominees
Amy Adams, Arrival
Jessica Chastain, Miss Sloane
Isabelle Huppert, Elle
Ruth Negga, Loving
Natalie Portman, Jackie
Will Win: Natalie Portman
Dark Horse: Amy Adams
- This is a stacked category, but it still isn’t that hard to pick. Portman checks basically all the Globes boxes for a performance, and it is hard to picture her losing, especially seeing as her greatest competition according to most pundits is over in the Comedy/Musical category. So unless Portman just refuses to go to any of the parties (which is possible, because she has won before and is pregnant so she may not consider it worth the effort), I don’t see anything stopping her from winning. Huppert could pull off a win, and her film has some love, but I guess I need to see a foreign language performance win here before I am willing to predict that. So Adams seems like the one person that could step in to knock Portman out, simply because she is also a fairly big star, is generally a good schmoozer, HFPA loves her, and is in a movie that a lot of people have seen (unlike Negga in Loving) and is generally beloved (unlike Chastain’s Miss Sloane, which isn’t necessarily universally hated, but those that dislike it really dislike it). Add in that this may be one of the only places to really honor Arrival and Amy Adams feels like a spoiler that wouldn’t actually be a terrible choice.
Best Actor, Comedy nominees
Colin Farrell, The Lobster
Ryan Gosling, La La Land
Hugh Grant, Florence Foster Jenkins
Jonah Hill, War Dogs
Ryan Reynolds, Deadpool
Will Win: Ryan Gosling
Dark Horse: Ryan Reynolds
- Even if La La Land isn’t as liked by the HFPA as it is by generally everyone else, it is hard to see Gosling losing. The HFPA is going to love him at parties, and he knows that this is likely the biggest award he is going to be able to win, considering how likely an Affleck sweep looks at this point. This is also a rather gutted category, as generally there are not really five performances that really warrant a nomination. Still, nothing says Globes like the idea that Reynolds could win for Deadpool. Reynolds is also charming as hell, and the HFPA totally would think they are being hip by rewarding a comic book movie, so this is totally in play.
Best Actress, Comedy nominees
Annette Bening, 20th Century Women
Lily Collins, Rules Don’t Apply
Hailee Steinfeld, The Edge of Seventeen
Emma Stone, La La Land
Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins
Will Win: Emma Stone
Dark Horse: Meryl Streep
- This is also a more stacked category than normal, as there is a case to be made for Stone, Streep, and Bening. Hell, in a weaker year you could even make an argument for Steinfeld. This feels like Stone’s moment, though, and a win would allow the Globes to be the first to really cement her status as an elite player in Hollywood, a position the HFPA loves claiming. Stone looks to be the chief competition going forward against Portman, so this win should set up that showdown. That said, never count out Bening or Streep, because they are Annette Bening and Meryl Streep and that can simply be enough at times (it helps they were both really good this year as well).
Best Supporting Actor nominees
Mahershala Ali, Moonlight
Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water
Simon Helberg, Florence Foster Jenkins
Dev Patel, Lion
Aaron Taylor Johnson, Nocturnal Animals
Will Win: Jeff Bridges
Dark Horse: Mahershala Ali
- There is no dark horse in this category really. It is either going to be Ali or Bridges. Ali has been winning mostly so far, and honestly he seems primed to sweep through the rest of the awards season, JK Simmons- or Christopher Plummer-style. But the HFPA loves Jeff Bridges, and he’s picked up deserved accolades elsewhere, so it’s totally fair to say that he should be the favorite, at least when it comes to the Globes. This is a tough one, but it feels like a place the Globes will go its own way and pick Bridges in hopes of jumpstarting his award campaign in earnest and as a way to honor Hell or High Water. Still, Ali should win, so he might simply be too unstoppable for even the HFPA to mess with his momentum.
Best Supporting Actress nominees
Viola Davis, Fences
Naomie Harris, Moonlight
Nicole Kidman, Lion
Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures
Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea
Will Win: Viola Davis
Dark Horse: Michelle Williams
- I am not even going to bother with this. Viola Davis is going to win and begin her rightful coronation towards Oscar glory because she is Viola fucking Davis, and this has gotten ridiculous. Fine, Michelle Williams has also gotten love for her performance in Manchester, and she might be a bigger threat come Oscar time, but for the purposes of the Globes, Davis is winning unless Manchester simply sweeps everything it is nominated for or the HFPA is just like “We love Nicole Kidman!” so she wins for Lion.
Best Screenplay nominees
Damien Chazelle, La La Land
Tom Ford, Nocturnal Animals
Barry Jenkins, Moonlight
Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea
Taylor Sheridan, Hell or High Water
Will Win: Kenneth Lonergan
Dark Horse: Taylor Sheridan
- Come on down Kenneth Lonergan for your consolation prize, as he looks like the clear favorite here, unlike the directing category. Both Jenkins or Chazelle could win here if either of their films simply sweep most of the awards, but really the only thing that could stop Lonergan at this point is if the HFPA really wants to honor Hell or High Water (and decides not to do so with Bridges), or because the HFPA just really doesn’t like Manchester, which, well, considering how dour that movie is could totally be the case. Though if the HFPA really wanted to do the most HFPA thing ever, Nocturnal Animals would win, simply because the HFPA seems to be the only group that loves that movie.
Best Original Score nominees
La La Land
Will Win: Moonlight
Dark Horse: Lion
- This is a really good category, and honestly any of these films could win by merit alone. La La Land is an obvious pick with its musical roots. Lion has a really solid score, and this is the best place to probably honor the Weinstein movie if the HFPA wanted to do so. Moonlight‘s score is hypnotic and integral to the movie. Hidden Figures would allow for some star power–Pharell did most of the music and so would be on hand to get the award. Arrival has a great score and has been controversially disqualified from Oscar consideration, so this could offer a chance for the Globes to pick a winner that people could legitimately argue is more deserving then whatever wins the Oscar. It is a really tough call. I think I will actually go with Moonlight, because La La Land is going to likely get best song, and this will allow the HFPA to keep the win count of Moonlight up, especially if they do decide to go with Bridges over Ali.
Best Original Song nominees
“Can’t Stop the Feeling,” Trolls
“City of Stars,” La La Land
“How Far I’ll Go,” Moana
Will Win: “City of Stars”
Dark Horse: “Can’t Stop the Feeling”
- This is also a star-powered and stacked category. There is a logic to saying that the HFPA wants a star on stage for this win, which it basically gets for any win other than “City of Stars,” whether that’s Justin Timberlake for “Can’t Stop the Feeling,” Stevie Wonder for “Faith,” Iggy Pop for “Gold,” or Lin-Manuel Miranda for “Moana.” So once again, everyone could win here, but despite all that, the obvious answer still feels like “City of Stars.” They already got all those stars to show up just for the nomination, and although the HFPA is going to honor the music of La La Land in one way or the other, the score is not nearly the lock as you might expect it to be. If “City of Stars” doesn’t win, just go with the biggest star so Timberlake and “Can’t Stop the Feeling.”
Best Animated Feature Film nominees
Kubo and the Two Strings
My Life as a Zucchini
Will Win: Zootopia
Dark Horse: Kubo and the Two Strings
- I gave up a long time ago on ever betting against Disney (or Pixar) to win this category, except in very rare instances, and especially when the studio actually has good nominees, as it does with both Moana and Zootopia. I personally prefer Moana, but Zootopia seems to be Disney’s preferred film at this point (which is fine, they are both great). I don’t think even Disney quite knows how to handle having two films to campaign for like this, and even if it throws all its support behind Zootopia this could get a bit awkward. That is why I could easily see a split Disney vote creating an opening for Kubo and the Two Strings, or hell, My Life as a Zucchini, to pull off the win. If Disney slips from its throne, my bet is on Kubo, because Laika is going to have a year when it wins the awards season, and this is the best film the studio has probably ever made.
Best Foreign Language Film nominees
Will Win: Toni Erdmann
Dark Horse: Elle
- Toni Erdmann feels like the winner, and is certainly the Oscar favorite if it actually gets nominated, but the Globes don’t always go the same way as the Oscars, especially considering their rules are so different. If the HFPA does love Huppert’s performance, they could decide the reward the film instead of her for best actress. Neruda is the kind of weird film I could see the HFPA liking, and The Salesman has the Fahedi pedigree that can’t be ignored. Still, Toni Erdman just feels like the winner, and is a real crowd pleaser to most so it should win.
Overall, I may have gone a bit too traditional in my film predictions, but the Globes really haven’t been quite as crazy lately, as even when they have been off, their picks have at least been solid contenders as the awards season goes on. So that might just mean they are due to really muck everything up, so stay tuned tonight.
All that stuff I said about how the HFPA has gotten less wonky on the movie side does not apply almost at all on the TV side. This is because of the weirdness of the Globes happening before the Emmys each year; the Globes honor some of the same stuff as the previous year’s Emmys but also some newer shows that weren’t eligible for this year’s Emmy awards. So when tasked with rewarding an already recognized show versus being able to give something to a shiny new show, the HFPA will often go with the shiny new show. Which, just to be clear isn’t always a bad thing; the Emmys have the opposite problem, where once something is nominated it takes way too long for it to stop being nominated. Plus, the Globes were the first group to really take streaming content from Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu seriously, so there is a lot of good here. On the downside, the HFPA get distracted too easily by things like period pieces, and more importantly for their love of movie stars, to the point that if a so-called movie star decides to go into television, the Globes will almost assuredly nominate them so that they will come to the HFPA parties. Often these stars will then win simply for being stars (though that part has been less true recently). Whatever normal logic still applied on the movie side is pretty much gone on the TV side, so expect a lot of picks that are basically, “This would win almost anywhere else, but instead such and such will win the Golden Globe, because HFPA.”
Best Television Series — Drama nominees
Game Of Thrones
This Is Us
Will Win: The Crown
Dark Horse: Westworld (or Stranger Things)
- As much as the Globes fascination with the shiny and new can be a bit much, I do appreciate how it has led to a really fun mix of shows getting recognition each year, even if they jump the gun a bit and cause this category to have constant turnover (only Game of Thrones returns from last year’s nominees). There is really a case to be made for each of these shows. If ever there was a year for the Globes to reward Game of Thrones, this would seem to be it, considering the generally positive critical consensus for the HBO drama’s sixth season, but the Globes have never really liked Game of Thrones as much as the rest of the planet, and honestly if the Globes felt they could get away with not nominating GoT without losing whatever shred of credibility the HFPA has left it probably totally would have happened. Still, GoT is GoT, so this could be its year. This is Us is one of the buzziest network shows in years, and airs on NBC just like the Globes, so it winning would totally make sense. Both Stranger Things and Westworld are the buzziest new shows, and shine brightly even now, so either one could pull this win off as the HFPA looks to be the first to anoint either. Both shows represent the same thing to the voters, but Westworld has more movie stars in it, so I guess it has a slight edge. But the HFPA would also be the first to reward Netflix’s The Crown. While it doesn’t have nearly the buzz of any of the other shows in this category, what it does have is being the most unknown of the group, being quite shiny and new itself, and, you know, being one of those period pieces the HFPA loves so so much. Picking this winner is still a bit of a crap shoot, and last year a lot of this logic applied to Outlander, which didn’t win; but The Crown still feels like the best bet right now.
Best Television Series — Musical or Comedy nominees
Mozart In The Jungle
Will Win: Atlanta
Dark Horse: Mozart In the Jungle
- So unlike the Emmys, the Globes have never been all that enamored with Veep, but counting it out seems foolish. Last year the Globes surprised everyone with its coronation of Mozart In The Jungle (the Amazon ads that played directly after its win were only kind of totally skeezy…), so don’t count it out either. Maybe they’ll reward Transparent for this this year instead of last year, but Atlanta is the newest hotness of the group and has drawn universal acclaim, so by new show law it seems like the best bet, unless the HFPA really just hates FX.
Best Limited Series nominees
The Night Manager
The Night Of
The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Will Win: The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Dark Horse: The Night Of
- Even the HFPA probably can’t stop the OJ train that started at the Emmys, but if it was to happen, The Night Of is as good a choice as any. Maybe The Night Manager because it as bigger stars. But it still seems hard to believe this will be anyone but OJ.
Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series — Drama nominees
Rami Malek, Mr. Robot
Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul
Matthew Rhys, The Americans
Liev Schreiber, Ray Donovan
Billy Bob Thornton, Goliath
Will Win: Billy Bob Thornton
Dark Horse: Rami Malek
- Let’s see, what is the Globesiest thing that could happen? Hmmm, Billy Bob Thornton winning, because why not… Yep that’s it. So he will win. If he doesn’t, this category gets tricky, as no one else sticks out. This could be the year Rhys finally wins something, but more than likely it would simply be Malek, because I am not as positive that the HFPA will be as angry about the second season of Mr. Robot as some people have been. I mean, they actually awarded Homeland twice for crying out loud.
Best Performance by an Actress In A Television Series — Drama nominees
Caitriona Balfe, Outlander
Claire Foy, The Crown
Keri Russell, The Americans
Winona Ryder, Stranger Things
Evan Rachel Wood, Westworld
Will Win: Claire Foy
Dark Horse: Winona Ryder
- This category is much trickier, as really anyone other than Russell (which is a shame) could probably win. Wood and Ryder have the movie star label and being the leads in two of the buzziest shows on television on their side. Ryder also has the comeback story angle, which helps as well. Foy and Balfe, meanwhile, have the period piece angle on their side, and both are still fairly unknown to most people. Foy, however, is the shiniest and newest of the two, so she has the edge. Since I think this will be a big night for The Crown, Foy feels like she checks the most boxes overall, and will get the win.
Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series — Musical or Comedy nominees
Anthony Anderson, Black-ish
Gael Garcia Bernal, Mozart In The Jungle
Donald Glover, Atlanta
Nick Nolte, Graves
Jeffrey Tambor, Transparent
Will Win: Donald Glover
Dark Horse: Nick Nolte
- I could see the Globes going back to Tambor after last year, but that is not something they normally do, so the most obvious answer is Donald Glover, who is coming off a star making turn right before he starts filming a Star Wars movie. He is still shiny and new, but that isn’t quite as big a deal for actors as it is for actresses, so with that, Nick Nolte could totally win because the Globes don’t give a fuck and just want to watch the world burn.
Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series — Musical or Comedy nominees
Rachel Bloom, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Sarah Jessica Parker, Divorce
Issa Rae, Insecure
Gina Rodriguez, Jane The Virgin
Tracee Ellis-Ross, Black-ish
Will Win: Issa Rae
Dark Horse: Sarah Jessica Parker
- The past two winners are in this category with Rodriguez and Bloom, who each won when they were the shiniest and newest thing on the block. That title now resides with Rae, so she should win. Parker won quite a bit in the past for Sex and the City, so she can never be counted out entirely.
Best Performance by an Actor in a Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
Riz Ahmed, The Night Of
Bryan Cranston, All The Way
Tom Hiddleston, The Night Manager
John Turturro, The Night Of
Courtney B Vance, The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Will Win: Courtney B Vance
Dark Horse: Riz Ahmed
- I don’t really know what to do with this category, but even with the HFPA’s contrarian nature, Vance feels like a strong pick, as he gives the kind of performance the Globes normally like. Still, that could be too obvious, in which case Hiddleston could win because he is the biggest star of the group. Or Ahmed could win because he is coming off a strong year thanks to being in both The Night Of and Rogue One.
Best Performance by an Actress in a Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television nominees
Felicity Huffman, American Crime
Riley Keough, The Girlfriend Experience
Sarah Paulson, The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Charlotte Rampling, London Spy
Kerry Washington, Confirmation
Will Win: Sarah Paulson
Dark Horse: Riley Keough (I am just being stubborn, she will probably win)
- I should really switch these, because Keough has the kind of role that almost always seems to win at the Globes, but this just feels silly. Of all the OJ nominees other than the show itself, Paulson seems like the one that has to win. Still, HFPA, so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television nominees
Sterling K. Brown, The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Hugh Laurie, The Night Manager
John Lithgow, The Crown
Christian Slater, Mr. Robot
John Travolta, The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Will Win: John Lithgow
Dark Horse: Jon Travolta
- While Sterling K. Brown would probably be a lock in basically any other award show, I doubt that will happen here. Most likely the HFPA will fully commit to its love for The Crown and Lithgow will pull off the win. But if the Globes really want to make a Globes pick, then Travolta takes the prize.
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television nominees
Olivia Colman, The Night Manager
Lena Heady, Game Of Thrones
Chrissy Metz, This Is Us
Mandy Moore, This Is Us
Thandie Newton, Westworld
Will Win: Thandie Newton
Dark Horse: Mandy Moore
- I really can’t imagine that the Globes wouldn’t find a way to honor Westworld in some form, considering how current it is in the zeitgeist, and this is the best place to do so if they really do fall in love with The Crown like I expect them to do. Still, it would also be strange if the Globes didn’t find a way to throw NBC a bone for This Is Us, and Moore is the buzzier of the two nominees, so she could sneak up and win as well–especially if Westworld wins in other places as the Globes spread the love around.
There you go. Those are some predictions for you. I guess we’ll see how I do, but honestly, ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. Let’s just get to the winners already so we can start talking about the Oscars as the awards season really kicks into high gear.