Many wondered if “Rothaniel” comedian Jerrod Carmichael would bring up the unseemly recent and not-so-recent history of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, particularly their problems with a notable lack of diversity in membership in the ranks of their journalists.
“Let’s be a little quiet here…I’m here ’cause I’m black,” began Carmichael in his signature deadpan style, which even echoed his Emmy-winning HBO “Rothaniel” special when he sat on the steps of the stage to relay the story of his being courted to host the 2023 return of the beleaguered telecast.
“This show, the Golden Globe Awards, did not air last year,” Carmichael helpfully reminded the healthy-ish looking crowd, despite many feeling that a no-show vibe was in the air, not to mention the unusual pounding rain hitting the Los Angeles area in the past few days.
“I won’t say they were racist, but they didn’t have a single black member since George Floyd died,” continued Carmichael. But he amusingly relayed that the organization hasn’t “had a black host in 79 years. I am un-fireable.” He then credits his mother with telling him, “‘Jerrod, enough of all that! How much are they paying you?’ I said, ‘$500,000.’ ‘Boy, if you don’t put on a suit and take that white people money…”
Carmichael kept it going for a strong, funny finish: “I heard they got six new black members, congrats to them, whatever,” he joked. “But it’s not why I’m here. I look out into this room and I see a lot of talented people, like people that I admire people that I would like to be like and people that I’m jealous of, and people that are actually really incredible artists. And regardless of whatever the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s past may be, this is an evening where we get to celebrate.”
And perhaps in an effort of voters wanting to put their heavily criticized racial legacy behind them or just plain happenstance, the first three Golden Globe winners chosen by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association were all actors of color — Supporting Actor-Movie winner Ke Huy Quan for “Everything Everywhere All at Once, Angela Bassett picking up a statuette for Supporting Actress-Movie for “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” and Supporting Actor – Television series winner Tyler James Williams for “Abbott Elementary.”