The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, who run the Golden Globes, have no Black members. They haven’t had any in decades.
When this news broke, criticism came from all corners, we know. Now, under pressure, the HFPA has been forced to say they will add 13 Black members immediately. They currently have around 87 members, many of whom are not professional journalists and shouldn’t be there.
The HFPA was forced to make this announcement after receiving a letter signed by 200 PR firms (See below) saying they would withdraw their celebrity clients from Golden Globes activities if change didn’t happen pronto. Celebrities are the lifeblood of the HFPA. They have no choice.
This has really been a disastrous scandal for the Globes. They overlooked many Black films and actors and directors this season. Today’s Oscar nominations were the absolute opposite, striving for inclusion. The HFPA must make changes quickly if they want to go on. It’s time to eject members who are not legitimate journalists, as well. It’s very peculiar that the HFPA has allowed Globes hosts like Ricky Gervais, and Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, to mock them on their own show. They thought people were laughing with them. They were laughing at them.
I know most of these undersigned publicists. I am so proud of them that they took this stand. They’ve wanted to for a long time. Bravo.
Here’s the letter from the PR firms addressed to
Greg Goecker, COO & General Counsel
Ali Sar, President
Meher Tatna, Board Chair
Hollywood Foreign Press Association
As publicists we collectively represent the vast majority of artists in the entertainment industry. We call on the Hollywood Foreign Press Association to swiftly manifest profound and lasting change to eradicate the longstanding exclusionary ethos and pervasive practice of discriminatory behavior, unprofessionalism, ethical impropriety and alleged financial corruption endemic to the HFPA, funded by Dick Clark Productions, MRC, NBCUniversal and Comcast.
In the last decade our industry has faced a seismic reckoning and begun to address its failure to reflect and honor the diversity of our community, yet we have witnessed no acceptance of responsibility, accountability or action from the HFPA, even as systemic inequity and egregious behavior are allowed to continue. We collectively and unequivocally agree that transformative change in your organization and its historical practices is essential and entirely achievable. We want to be part of the solution.
To reflect how urgent and necessary we feel this work is, we cannot advocate for our clients to participate in HFPA events or interviews as we await your explicit plans and timeline for transformational change.
While we stand ready to support your good faith efforts, please know that anything less than transparent, meaningful change that respects and honors the diversity and dignity of our clients, their colleagues and our global audience will result in immediate and irreparable damage to the relationship between our agencies, our clients and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and those who sanction the institutional inequity and insular culture that currently define it.
The eyes of the industry and those who support it are watching.
align Public Relations
American Entertainment Marketing (AEM)
Anderson Public Relations Group
Ascend Public Relations Group
Carol Marshall Public Relations
Cassandra Butcher PR & Marketing
Cinematic Red PR
Core PR Group
Elzer & Associates
Flash Forward Publicity
Full Coverage Communications
Guttman Associates Public Relations
Heidi Schaeffer Public Relations
Image Management PR
Independent Public Relations
Jill Fritzo Public Relations
Joy Fehily Management + Consulting
Katrina Wan PR
Katz Public Relations
LSG Public Relations
Main Stage Public Relations
Marleah Leslie & Associates
McClure & Associates Public Relations
Meghan Prophet Public Relations
MRC Publicity and Marketing
Nancy Seltzer & Associates
Patricola Public Relations
Paula Woods Consultants
Pinnacle Public Relations
Platform Public Relations
PMG-Platform Media Group
Presse Public Relations
Principal Communications Group
Prism Media Group
Public Eye Communications
Red Sea Entertainment
Rogers & Cowan/PMK
Rosenfield Media Group
Schure Media Group
Strategic Heights Media
Strategic Public Relations
SYStrategies & PR
Tencer & Associates
The Chamber Group
The Collins Jackson Agency
The Initiative Group
The Lede Company
The Oriel Company
The Samonte Group
True Public Relations
VanIden Public Relations