Oscar 2007: Golden Globes Awards Announcement

January 13, 2008–For Golden Globes vets, the short evening (40 minutes) was unfamiliar. It took place in the Beverly Hilton hotel's International Ballroom, but there was no red carpet, no screaming crowds, and no stars.

There were about 500 journos, 55 TV crews, with anchors patiently standing around while their crew adjusted the lighting, while 40 still photographers roamed around and print journalists either sat at tables with their laptops or on chairs writing in notepads.

The 65th annual Golden Globes ceremony was like no other. The Dick Clark Prods pulled together a nationally televised awards show in 48 hours. But after months of negotiations and 10 days of intense wrangling among the WGA and NBC, HFPA and Globes ceremony producer Dick Clark Prods. took over on Friday.

Al Schwartz, a 14-year producer on the event for Dick Clark Prods., described the event as a “kamikaze mission,” arranging for the set, the presenters, clip packages and satellite trucks in two days. “It's like anything in Hollywood: You have no time to get things done, but somehow you do.”

Those who arrived at the hotel Sunday afternoon were told that the show would probably last a half-hour. When it was an NBC News event, it was skedded as a one-hour TV event.

The hasty planning was also apparent a few hours before the start of the show, as a dozen crew members adjusted the lighting and the set. HFPA members circulated, some in a festive mood, others looking confused.

Inside the ballroom, there were the usual hallmarks of an awards show before the start: Publicists on cell phones in the back of the room, crews jostling for the best place, and attendees photographing one another with cell phones. The big difference is there were only a handful of folks in black tie.

By airtime, the place was jammed. As the six presenters sat onstage, the photogs clicked like crazy, while a foreign journalist wondered aloud, “Who ARE these people, does anybody know”

Despite fears that WGA sympathizers might try to disrupt the live newser, the telecast was protest-free other than a few benign comments from the award presenters and HFPA prexy Jorge Camara's earnest plea: “We all hope that the writers strike will be over soon so that everybody can go back to making good movies and television, which is what the Golden Globes is designed to celebrate.”

The presenters seemed to rattle through the list, covering three hours' worth of winners in 40 minutes. But the applause was respectable, even though no contenders were present