Golden Globe sponsors give $750,000 to charity

Wed Jul 30, 2008 9:18pm EDT
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The organization that hands out Hollywood's Golden Globe Awards said on Wednesday said it has given grants of more than $750,000 to several top film schools and nonprofit organizations.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association annually gives out money from profits it receives for televising its gala ceremony each January at which it gives out awards for best films, TV programs, actors and actresses.

But this year, the Golden Globes telecast was transformed into a news conference awarding winners because striking Hollywood writers vowed to protest the awards show, and some actors said they would not cross a writers' picket line.

Still, the NBC TV network did broadcast the news conference announcing award winners, but it only lasted about 30 minutes compared to the ceremony's typically three hours or more.

The Golden Globes are one of Hollywood's top honors for film and TV, and typically its telecast attracts more than 20 million viewers. But this year's news conference drew a TV audience of only about 5.8 million.

"Despite last January's cancellation ... that curtailed the Hollywood Foreign Press Association's income, we're delighted to honor our ongoing commitment to support entertainment industry-related film school and nonprofit organizations," Jorge Camara, HFPA President, said in a statement.

In the past 13 years, the HFPA has donated more than $7.5 million to entertainment-related charities. Last year, HFPA donated $1.2 million dollars toward philanthropic pursuits.

(Reporting by Syantani Chatterjee; Editing by Bob Tourtellotte and Jill Serjeant)

<p>A stagehand carries part of a giant Golden Globe statue prior to the 65th annual Golden Globe Awards news conference at the Beverly Hilton hotel in Beverly Hills, California January 13, 2008. REUTERS/Fred Prouser</p>