Golden Globes Rules Tweaked, Will Factor in Netflix

The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. has clarified a dozen points in the Golden Globe rules without any major shakeups — but the rules for film, and especially TV, offer evidence of changes in the entertainment industry.

Highlights of the tweaks:

  • If a project is released simultaneously in theaters and on Netflix, it will be considered a motion picture, rather than a TV show.
  • A TV series must have a minimum running time of 150 minutes, a rule that overrides the previous dictum of six episodes. This applies for both series and acting considerations.
  • Lead actors in a series are defined as those who “drive the narrative of the program.”
  • Producers will receive the Globes for best picture and best TV series, with the Producers Guild defining who’s eligible. The HFPA has been following this practice, but it was never explicitly outlined in the rules.
  • The exception to this is the foreign-language award, which goes to the director.
  • The rules delete any references to press conferences. The mention of these in earlier rules had confused some publicists, who mistakenly thought a press conference was a criterion for eligibility.
  • Officially ineligible: voice-only performances and cameos in which an individual portrays him/herself.

There are 14 film categories and 11 for the TV races.

Some of the changes are trying to keep up with developments in the market, since TV series have offered many variations in the number of episodes or retained the title while changing characters and plot from one season to another. This caused confusion as to what was a series or limited series.

And as digital releases become a part of film distribution, the previous rule had only specified that the classification was based on which platform (e.g. bigscreen or online) hosted the first release.

The organization tweaks its rules annually to clarify key points. Rules changes are recommended by a reminders-list committee, then submitted to the board, with final approval going to all members.

Many rules remain intact, such as in animated film, where 75% of main character action must be animated, and these films will not qualify as best film (either comedy/musical or drama) or foreign-language film.

Lorenzo Soria is the new HFPA president.

Eligibility period is the calendar year, with ballots tallied by Ernst & Young. The 73rd annual Golden Globe nominations will be announced on December 10 and the ceremony will be held January 10.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Woody Allen

    Woody Allen's 'A Rainy Day in New York' to Open Deauville Film Festival

    After being shelved by Amazon Studios in the U.S., Woody Allen’s “A Rainy Day in New York” will be opening the 45th edition of the Deauville American Film Festival in France this fall. “A Rainy Day in New York,” which stars Timotheé Chalamet and Elle Fanning, will be the 8th film by Allen to play [...]

  • Phyllis Nagy

    Writers Guild Candidate Phyllis Nagy Warns of Risks to Residuals (EXCLUSIVE)

    Phyllis Nagy, who is challenging Writers Guild of America West President David Goodman, has warned that guild leaders are endangering future residuals. Nagy, in a message posted Wednesday on her Writers Forward Together site, said residual payments are the most important issue the WGA faces during upcoming negotiations on a successor deal to the current master [...]

  • Geneva Wasserman

    Condé Nast Taps Film Veteran Geneva Wasserman as SVP of Motion Pictures

    Condé Nast Entertainment hired Geneva Wasserman as senior vice president of motion pictures, overseeing development of the media company’s slate of feature film properties. Wasserman, a nearly 20-year veteran of the entertainment industry, most recently served as co-founder and executive producer of production firm Project Z Entertainment. She takes over the role at CNE after [...]

  • Annabelle Wallis'The Loudest Voice' TV show

    James Wan's New Horror Film Casts 'Loudest Voice' Star Annabelle Wallis (EXCLUSIVE)

    Annabelle Wallis, who most recently appeared in Showtime’s Roger Ailes miniseries “The Loudest Voice,” has been tapped to star in James Wan’s top secret horror project, sources tell Variety. Wan is tackling the movie this fall before he jumps into prep on the “Aquaman” sequel with Jason Momoa at the top of 2020. Plot details [...]

  • New York Festival Sets Documentaries on

    New York Film Festival Sets Documentaries on Merce Cunningham, Roy Cohn

    Films on Merce Cunningham, Roy Cohn and Oliver Sacks are among the notable titles set for the Spotlight on Documentary lineup at the 57th New York Film Festival. Alla Kovgan’s “Cunningham 3D” centers on dancer and choreographer Cunningham, who was at the forefront of American modern dance for half a century. The Cohn documentary “Bully. [...]

  • CineLink Work in Progress Provides Step

    CineLink Work in Progress Provides Step Onto International Stage

    The Sarajevo Film Festival’s CineLink Work in Progress section has become a major venue for filmmakers from Southeastern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa – this year it saw nearly 70 submissions, the most in the past decade. The competitive program boasts a large number of projects that have gone on to achieve major [...]

  • System Crasher

    Oscars: Germany Selects 'System Crasher' for International Feature Film Award

    Germany has chosen Nora Fingscheidt’s “System Crasher” as its entry for the newly re-branded International Feature Film award at the 92nd Academy Awards, it was announced Wednesday by promotional body German Films. Produced by Kineo Filmproduktion and Weydemann Bros, the film won a Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival, where it received its world premiere [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content