Monday, May 27, 2024

Globes: How Renee Zellweger Almost Missed Her Award, How Jennifer Aniston, Ellen Degeneres Reacted to the Envelope Opening


Renee Zellweger almost missed getting her Golden Globe last night for the movie, “Judy.”

During the commercial break before the nominees for Best Actress in a Drama were read, Renee got up from her seat and headed up the main aisle. She paused briefly as she hit the first plateau and we spoke. Then she said, “I have to go to the bathroom!” Stars are human, you know.

Just as she continued her trek up the stairs, two of my colleagues said to me, “Roger, where is she going? Her category is next! Go after her!”

And so I did, following Renee up the stairs. But she had disappeared. The soundboard is right across from the Ladies’ room, so I stopped and said to one of the show’s tech people, “You know, Renee Zellweger is in the bathroom. FYI. You don’t want her to miss her call.” Years ago, Christine Lahti did exactly that.

Suddenly Renee emerged, and was startled to see me again. “Renee,” I said, “your category is next. You have to get back to your seat.” Renee is so polite and well comported, she said, “Oh we have plenty of time It’s best actor right now.” I replied, “No, no, no. You’ve got to get back now!” We pushed our way past a thicket of guests and back down the aisle she went.

A few minutes later, her name was announced. I was still standing at the top of the stairs. So were Jennifer Aniston and Ellen Degeneres. When they called “And the Golden Globe goes to…Renee Zellweger!” Aniston literally jumped for joy. She let out a shriek: “It’s Renee!” By that point the whole room was in an uproar.

My companion for the night, the great New York PR maven Norah Lawlor, was right behind me. She got this shot of Aniston and Degeneres that couldn’t better. Sweet joy for a friend.


photo c2020 Norah Lawlor, Lawlor Media Group

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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