No glitz as Hollywood awaits Globes amid strike

Sun Jan 13, 2008 1:13pm EST
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By Bob Tourtellotte

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Hollywood on Sunday awaited the strike-plagued Golden Globe Awards at a drab news conference to announce winners, rather than the usual star-filled gala.

The film and television awards, given out by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, are a key stop on the road to Oscars, the world's top film honors, and as a result are widely watched in the industry and by millions of television viewers.

But the screenwriters strike derailed this year's event when the Writers Guild of America, which is embroiled in a labor dispute with major film and TV studios, threatened to picket the ceremony. As a result, A-list stars to refuse to attend.

Lacking star power, television network NBC and the HFPA scrapped the gala shown on TV in a roughly three-hour telecast, and in its place decided to air a one-hour news conference.

Typically on Golden Globe Sunday, stars such as Keira Knightley, nominated for best actress in a drama for her role in romance "Atonement," would have picked designer gowns and glittering jewelry to parade up the red carpet.

Nominated actors such as George Clooney for legal thriller "Michael Clayton" and Daniel Day-Lewis in dark human drama "There Will Be Blood" might be practicing Golden Globe acceptance speeches that could kick off an Oscar campaign.

But this year, none of that is happening.

"The Globes are often an Oscar audition," said Tom O'Neil of awards Web site "But their impact will be reduced this year because we won't see stars giving speeches."   Continued...

<p>Banners promoting the 65th Annual Golden Globe Awards on the NBC television network are seen attached to street light poles in Los Angeles January 8, 2008. REUTERS/Fred Prouse</p>