There was one person in the Beverly Hilton ballroom last night who wasn’t surprised by Robert Downey Jr.’s win for Best Actor in a comedy/musical for ‘”Sherlock Holmes“: Robert Downey Jr.
“I smelled victory!” he told me after I asked him if he’d been caught off guard at the Golden Globes. Not at all. And though we loved RDJr., it’s hard to imagine that he envisioned beating Daniel Day-Lewis and the other nominees. His Sherlock was not the best reviewed performance of the year.
But “Sherlock” as an action hero made a lot of money. So there. And that’s what the Golden Globes are into most: money, hits, and ratings. And so they delivered awards to “Avatar,” a technological hit with a bad screenplay and no acting, Sandra Bullock, Downey, etc. What made no sense, made sense. You could feel the members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences reaching for their pens to undo the damage.
And what a totally weird night. Prompted by genius host Ricky Gervais,’one speaker after another made comments about the Globe prizes being “bought.” Downey called the Hollywood’Foreign Press Association a’weird group, and mortician-like president Philip Berk didn’t help matters much with his’dry welcome from the podium.
And Berk was alone in being dry, as’he and his cohorts for some reason’ignored days of weather forecasts and refused to tent the red carpet. The rain started to fall on cue at 1:30pm, the temperature dropped precipitously, and umbrellas popped up everywhere. Stars came in off the carpet with ruined coiffures and rain streaked gowns and tuxedos. Why was there no tent? Around the back of the hotel. HBO managed to erect cover quickly with no trouble. But not the HFPA. Said one member of the security team, with a shrug: “Please, don’t ask me about these people.”
Oh but we will, again and again.