The votes have been tallied and the nominations revealed, but we've still got a bunch of nagging questions about the 70th Annual Golden Globe Awards that just won't go away. We've already given you our reasons why Salmon Fishing In the Yemen scored highly unexpected nods in three major categories. So we decided to round up the rest of the biggest headscratchers and give you some answers.
Why was Smash placed in the Musical or Comedy category, while Nashville was a Drama contender?
Those shows do seem rather similar in terms of format, don't they? They both feature stardom-obsessed crooners who are known to break out into song at the drop of a hat. And they both feature original songs. So what's the difference? Here's our theory: A nomination for at least one musical show was necessary to continue to justify the musical part of the Best TV Series—Comedy or Musical category, since they'd be crazy to consider nominating Glee these days. They went with Smash because it's conceived of primarily as a musical, with whatever "drama" it contains being clearly subsidiary. And how could any series that featured all that Ellis nonsense be considered a drama? Nashville, however, is primarily conceived as a drama...with a musical component. Its songs are subsidiary to the soapy drama. The storylines drive the songs—see that strong recent episode in which Connie Britton's Rayna and Hayden Panettiere's Juliette have a Mozart & Salieri-style joint songwriting session—rather than the songs driving the storylines. "Telescope" is a tuneful ditty indeed, but it wasn't the focal point of its episode, while, say, the Bollywood number on Smash very much was that episode's showcase. Hence, Nashville gets put up in the Drama categories and Smash goes in the Musical or Comedy field.
At This Point, Will Nicole Kidman Be Nominated for Literally Anything?
Apparently, yes. Even when that movie is The Paperboy and she's peeing on Zac Efron. That's how much the Hollywood Foreign Press, and by extension any award-issuing voting body, loves her. You could also say that Aaron Sorkin, whose new HBO series The Newsroom beat out Mad Men for a Best TV Drama nom, has now reached a similar level of kneejerk fete-ing, despite the mixed reviews his show garnered during its summer run.
Why is Taylor Swift Eligible for the Globes but not the Oscars?
Actually, as far as we can tell, Taylor Swift's song "Safe & Sound" was very much eligible to be nominated for Best Original Song at the Oscars. It was an original song written directly for The Hunger Games and appeared only on the Hunger Games soundtrack. And yet, while "Safe & Sound" got a Golden Globe nomination for Best Original Song, it didn't even make the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science's shortlist of contenders, a shortlist that includes Rick Ross' "100 Black Coffins" from Django Unchained, Katy Perry's "Wide Awake" from her documentary Part of Me, Adele's "Skyfall," and even the Matthew McConaughey original "Ladies of Tampa" from Magic Mike. I guess the Academy just didn't care for Swift's rootsy Americana lullaby. Maybe she can write a break-up song about Oscar.
Could Rachel Weisz Really Be a Best Actress Contender Come Oscar Time?
At this point, most definitely. Weisz' heartbreaking turn as Hester, a 1950s judge's wife who has an affair with an RAF officer (Tom Hiddleston), in The Deep Blue Sea already snagged her the New York Film Critics Circle's Best Actress prize. Her Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress in a Drama will make her a heavyweight contender against other sure-thing nominees Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty), Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook), and Naomi Watts (The Impossible).
Why is American Horror Story still considered a miniseries?
You would think that having a second season would automatically invalidate the macabre FX drama from being labeled a miniseries. After all, Downton Abbey was relegated to the Best TV Drama category for its second year. But the key distinction with AHS is revealed in the punctuation of its title, American Horror Story: Asylum. Co-creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk envisioned the show as an anthology series, with each season telling a distinct and standalone story. It may be a bit of a cheat, considering how many actors from the first season have returned for Asylum (albeit as different characters), but the HFPA were convinced, and classified it as a miniseries. If Asylum had to compete in the Drama categories it would almost assuredly have been shut out.
Has Mad Men lost its awards luster?
Based on its showing among the nominees, it sure seems like it. AMC's critically adored series, long considered among the very best to be found on TV, only picked up a single nomination: for Jon Hamm as Best Actor in a TV Drama. (It's four year Best Drama winning-streak was broken at the Emmys in September by Homeland.) Which is a shame, since Season 5, which aired earlier in 2012, was among its very best. We're particularly sad that Elisabeth Moss, Christina Hendricks, and Jessica Paré were all shut out because Mad Men this year would have been nothing without its Mad Women.
Is Ben Affleck officially more respected as a director than an actor?
Even a month ago it seemed assured that Affleck would land a Best Actor Oscar nomination. Now that eventuality is in doubt, based on the all-but-guaranteed nods for Daniel Day-Lewis (Lincoln), John Hawkes (The Sessions), Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook), Denzel Washington (Flight), and Hugh Jackman (Les Misérables). And yet Affleck is a shoo-in for Best Director. Well, that's exactly what happened with the Golden Globe noms, as well. Affleck was acknowledged for his work behind the camera but not in front of it.
What is Magic City?
You're not in the wrong to ask that since the Starz original series has never drawn a larger audience than 500,000. Well, Magic City, a period drama set in 1959 about a Miami hotel manager (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) trying to keep the glitz alive in the aftermath of the Cuban Revolution, scored character actor Danny Huston a Best Supporting Actor nod. When it comes to the HFPA acknowledging Florida-set entertainment, though, we're wondering if they somehow confused Magic City with Magic Mike.
Follow Christian Blauvelt on Twitter @Ctblauvelt
[Photo Credit: Anne Marie Fox/Millennium Entertainment]