My biggest interview last night was Eddie Murphy. I don’t think we really believed we would get him going into it. This is Eddie Murphy, he’s not the most accessible of celebrities and he’s never the celebrity who gives every outlet on the press line a few minutes. That said, Eddie is campaigning for Dolemite Is My Name and if you haven’t seen this on Netflix…
Let’s sidebar quickly about Dolemite because it’s GREAT. Dolemite is currently sitting at 97% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes and 76% on Metacritic – this is a VERY high score, one of the highest scores of the year and none of that is possible without Eddie’s electrifying performance. So … why isn’t the film a contender? Why isn’t Eddie a frontrunner? How is it not being talked about in the way that Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood is being talked about? I’m making this comparison because of the irreverence in the storytelling, because of the LA setting of both films – and yet doesn’t it seem like one is being taken more seriously in certain circles, award circles, than the other?
Doesn’t it seem like Eddie’s performance isn’t being taken as seriously as some of the others? Is it because they think it’s “easy” for Eddie Murphy to play a larger-than-life, provocative hustler? Easier than it is for Joaquin Phoenix, who’s made a career of playing socially awkward weirdoes, to play a socially awkward weirdo?
Eddie is NOT Rudy Ray Moore. On stage Eddie Murphy is, yes, bold and boisterous but in person, actually, and this has been said about him for years, he’s rather soft-spoken and shy. His energy is really calm, really chill. There was no attitude when I interviewed him, no reluctance or anything, but he wasn’t leading with a joke, he wasn’t buzzing with a need to perform. Eddie Murphy is an actor. He is not his characters – he just happens to be so good at playing his characters that, I guess, even among his peers, he’s underrated.
But he’s a legend, truly a legend, and still he’s showing up at the Golden Globes, talking to Canadian outlets about his film, laughing when I asked him about Ricky Gervais and whether or not he thought Ricky would have a go at him. If he had won, do you think Eddie would have set his trophy down on the floor and left it there during his entire speech?
I know you know who I’m talking about. He’s the one who’s not doing it for the awards. Who went up there to tell us what we already know – that he’s so uncomfortable and embarrassed in this position of being singled out and awarded. Watching him be exhausted by the recognition is exhausting. And then watching him try to get his message out about the planet and social justice and taking private planes was even more exhausting because, like, who are you even talking to, half that room flies exclusively on private jets, and if you’re really trying to appeal to them on this night, maybe if you had more practice at being exhaustingly celebrated, you’d be able to articulate yourself better so that what you mean actually lands?!
Joaquin Phoenix edged out Antonio Banderas and Adam Driver in the Best Drama Actor category. Interestingly, at the Palm Springs Film Festival a few days ago, with both Joaquin and Antonio in attendance and receiving awards, after Joaquin got up onstage and talked about his reluctance, Antonio followed by saying that anybody who claims to not care about awards is lying, countering Joaquin’s position with this:
"I do care about awards. I have been a nominee for many years and I've never gotten here. I sat down at those tables and heard the names of other people. You want to go up there. I am very thankful that you put me up here just to pick up this piece, this symbol, this icon that is going to [remind] me that I did a movie with my friend Pedro Almodóvar. We did eight movies; we touched the lives of people around the world. It's an honor and a privilege to me."
If Joaquin doesn’t want it, can Antonio have it?
And what about Adam Driver? He’s been picking up a lot of momentum the last few weeks for his performance in Marriage Story and as I listened to Joaquin go on and nowhere during his speech, I wondered what Adam is like where awards are concerned. We know, like Joaquin, that he doesn’t like press and that he doesn’t like watching himself. But we don’t actually know much about his attitude about awards. Can we give him the benefit of the doubt that maybe he’s not as exhausted and pained by the prospect as Joaquin Phoenix. That, maybe, he’s more like… Tom Hanks?
Tom Hanks isn’t uncomfortable with being up on a stage holding a trophy. Tom Hanks took the opportunity to talk about the privilege of working, and working as a member of a team. Tom Hanks talked about PUNCTUALITY! About showing up on time to respect other people’s time. And it’s not like anyone out here is calling Tom Hanks a thirsty bitch for wanting to win, Joaquin. His speech tonight, by the way, could also serve as an Oscar audition for another nomination for his work on A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood. Tom Hanks wouldn’t set his trophy down on the ground.
While we’re at it though… have you seen this video of Tom’s son, Chet (!), on the red carpet last night?
why is Tom Hanks' son Chet Hanks speaking patois? pic.twitter.com/mNh8ih8JhA— Brittny Pierre 🥳♒️ (@sleep2dream) January 6, 2020
Kathleen sent this to me and Duana right after the show and I just don’t know where to put this in my brain…and how to erase it.
Also did you hear about what happened to Rita Wilson?
She looked great but … I wonder what’s going to happen to this hair and makeup person who wasn’t showing their work?