Just as caterers, tuxedo shops, limo services and the Beverly Hilton, among others, made some serious money from the Golden Globes, financial benefit was not far from the minds of arriving filmmakers.
“A Very Long Engagement” helmer Jean-Pierre Jeunet said he saw the night as part of the international “award circus” that he was happy to run away and join.
“It’s important to be part of the big circus,” Jeunet said. “It makes it easier to get money for the next film.”
Lions Gate Films’ prexy Tom Ortenberg said: “It’s good to be nominated; it’s great to win, but the money is in the nomination.”
As guests arrived, they walked past 210 fans in the bleachers. Some were guests of the HFPA, but 160 of them paid between $1,099 and $1,899 for a two-night package at the BevHilton.
The deal included a deluxe room, two seats overlooking the arrivals (the higher priced package guaranteed a place in the front row); buffet breakfast and a bag lunch to munch on while watching the stars arrive.
The package has been sold-out since July. Though some might see the deal as cashing in on a “Day of the Locust”-type scene, everyone involved seemed pleased. The fans cheered and the hotel pocketed between $90,000 and $150,000.
Each of the 1,300 guests who strode the red carpet was holding a gold-and-black colored ticket embossed with their name. A $600 price was on each one.
However, the HFPA sold some of the ducats for $300. These were for seats way in the back. Or, as one ticket holder described them: “Seats so bad you wouldn’t humiliate yourself by sitting at the table.”
It wasn’t clear who had to pay for tickets and who came free. Nominees were probably on the gratis list. Agents probably weren’t. One paying guest said he’d decided the HFPA’s decision making formula was: “If you’re not doing something for them, you’re paying.”
No matter who was picking up the tab, there was the classic, award show tone of glad-to-be-here among arriving guests.
Nancy Lasseter, who came with husband Pixar founder John, said they enjoy visiting from Northern California because “it’s nice to get a little bling in our lives.”
“The Aviator” producer Graham King said he was thinking of his family in England watching the show when it airs live on Sky at 1 a.m. “I’d like to have video cameras in the house to see who stays awake until the last award,” King said.
And speaking for those who’ve won before, “Million Dollar Baby” producer Al Ruddy said: “I’ve got two Globes. I’m Globe’d out. But I want the three-peat.”
Security was at about the same post-9/11 level as last year. Though guests mentioned more about traffic problems holding up arrivals.
U pictures topper Stacey Snider said as she was stuck in traffic she thought wistfully back on the days “when you could just slip in through Trader Vic’s.”
And, in what was surely a first for the Globes, the former winner of its new actor award came down the red carpet as the current governor of California.
And, fittingly for a former actor, “Stay Hungry” star Arnold Schwarzenegger made one stop on the red carpet: to kiss his former PMK publicist on the cheek.