In recent weeks, The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the organisation behind the Golden Globes, has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. As diversity issues came to the fore in the press, things were exacerbated further still as the former president and longstanding member Phillip Berk was expelled after sharing an anti-BLM article and Netflix has since stopped all activity with the association until “meaningful changes” are made.
Now, Scarlett Johansson has also spoken out about why she avoided attending press conferences for the annual Golden Globes events in recent years. “As an actor promoting a film, one is expected to participate in awards season by attending press conferences as well as awards shows,” Johansson told the Los Angeles Times.
Adding: “In the past, this has often meant facing sexist questions and remarks by certain HFPA members that bordered on sexual harassment. It is the exact reason why I, for many years, refused to participate in their conferences.”
Over the course of her career, Johansson has received five Golden Globe nominations, but in recent year’s she has not partaken in promotional campaigns with the HFPA.
Her statement continues: “The HFPA is an organization that was legitimised by the likes of [former mogul] Harvey Weinstein to amass momentum for Academy recognition and the industry followed suit,” Johansson said. “Unless there is necessary fundamental reform within the organisation, I believe it is time that we take a step back from the HFPA and focus on the importance and strength of unity within our unions and the industry as a whole.”
In response to recent criticism, HFPA President Ali Star remarked, “We hear your concerns about the changes our association needs to make and want to assure you that we are working diligently on all of them.
“We can assure you that our plan reflects input from our supporters and critics alike, and we truly believe that our plan will drive meaningful reform and inclusion within our Association and in a way that the entire industry can be proud of.”