×

Golden Globes Snubs and Surprises: From ‘Moonlight’ to ‘The Night Manager’

The Golden Globes are known for their unpredictability, but with so many of this year’s winners following Globe trends, 2017 had fewer surprises than usual. Still, who expected underdogs Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Isabelle Huppert to prevail on the film side? And who thought AMC’s “The Night Manager” would win more Globes than FX’s mighty “The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story” in the TV honors? Or that indie darling (and critics favorite) “Moonlight” would go home empty-handed, before winning the night’s final award? Or that HBO, the year’s most nominated TV network, would score a goose egg?

Here are 11 of the biggest snubs and surprises from the 2017 Golden Globes:

SURPRISE: Isabelle Huppert, “Elle”
Most had tipped Natalie Portman to win her third Golden Globe for channeling the former First Lady in “Jackie,” but it was Isabelle Huppert who scored the best actress win for Paul Verhoeven’s divisive film “Elle.” Perhaps it’s not such a surprise; the HFPA loves its international stars, Huppert is an icon, and they clearly loved the sexual revenge drama, which also won best foreign language film.

SNUB AND SURPRISE: “Moonlight”
The year’s critical favorite, “Moonlight” went in with six nominations — second only to “La La Land” with seven nods. But while “La La” enjoyed a clean sweep, Barry Jenkins’ acclaimed indie, focusing on a young gay black man coming of age, appeared to be going home empty-handed, particularly after supporting actor frontrunner Mahershala Ali lost to Aaron Taylor-Johnson for “Nocturnal Animals.” But all was well at the end of the night as Sylvester Stallone and Carl Weathers announced “Moonlight” as the best picture of year — which at that point, felt like a surprise (although Oscar winner “12 Years a Slave” experienced the same rollercoaster in 2014). Even producer Adele Romanski noted at the podium, “To be honest, I didn’t think this was going to happen.”

SNUB: HBO
With 14 nominations, the premium cable powerhouse led all contenders going into the night. Surprisingly, the network was shut out completely — enduring losses for hot newcomers (“Westworld,” “Insecure”), veterans (“Veep,” “Game of Thrones”), and an acclaimed limited series (“The Night Of”) alike.

SURPRISE: “La La Land’s” clean sweep
While it was expected to be a good night for Damien Chazelle’s musical, few predicted the movie would win in every category for which it was nominated, taking home seven statues. In the musical/comedy film category it took home film, actor, and actress, in addition to awards for director, screenplay, score, and song (“City of Stars.”) It broke the record previously held by “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” and “Midnight Express,” which both won six.

SURPRISE: Tracee Ellis Ross, “Black-ish”
It’s always wise to bet on a first-time nominee in the TV acting categories, and Ross had the added benefit of noms for her series and co-star Anthony Anderson. But her win is a minor upset as many saw this category as a showdown between HBO divas Sarah Jessica Parker (a four-time Globe winner landing her first nom for “Divorce”) and Issa Rae (the “Insecure” creator-star is celebrated newbie in the mold of the previous two winners: Gina Rodriguez and Rachel Bloom).

SNUB: Courtney B. Vance and Sterling K. Brown, “The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story”
They both won Emmys for their work as rival lawyers Johnnie Cochran and Chris Darden, but the acclaimed duos fell victim to…

SURPRISE: “The Night Manager” (nearly) sweeps limited series acting categories
AMC’s limited series had the second most nominations of the year in TV categories (after “O.J.”), and was obviously a top contender. But few expected all three of its nominated actors to take home trophies: star Tom Hiddleston and supporting players Hugh Laurie and Olivia Colman. Laurie, who has two previous Globes for “House,” was perhaps most surprising of all as he topped both Brown and “The Crown” standout John Lithgow.

SURPRISE: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, “Nocturnal Animals”
When Tom Ford’s moody thriller premiered, all the awards buzz was on co-star Michael Shannon for best supporting actor. But the Golden Globes not only chose to nominate Taylor-Johnson, he won the award over perceived frontrunner Mahershala Ali (“Moonlight”) and a legend like Jeff Bridges (“Hell or High Water.”) Taylor-Johnson failed to score a SAG Award nomination for his portrayal of a violent psychopath who terrorizes Jake Gyllenhaal and his family, but the Globe win boosts his odds for an Oscar nod.

SNUB: Rami Malek, “Mr. Robot”
The reigning Emmy winner lost his first Globe bid to Jon Hamm’s final “Mad Men” season last year. And this year he went down to Amazon’s “Goliath” star Billy Bob Thornton — the only nominee from a freshman show (always a Globes advantage), who previously pulled a big upset with his win for “Fargo” in 2015.

SURPRISE: “Zootopia”
Not a big shock, as the film was a critical and financial smash, but it faced stiff competition from fellow Disney flick “Moana.” But in the end, the fuzzy animals of “Zootopia” beat out Dwayne Johnson’s god to take the top animation prize.

SNUB: “This Is Us”
NBC’s breakout hit was nominated for three Globes in two categories (drama series and supporting actress for both Mandy Moore and Chrissy Metz), and lost them all. It wasn’t the only freshman series with multiple noms shut out (Netflix’s “Stranger Things” lost two bids and HBO’s “Westworld” lost three), but it was the only one that airs on the network that also broadcasts the Globes.

Popular on Variety

More TV

  • AMERICA'S GOT TALENT -- "Live Results

    TV Ratings: 'America's Got Talent' Finale Draws 10 Million Viewers

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read on if you have not seen the season 14 finale of “America’s Got Talent.” The finale of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” which saw blind, autistic singer Kodi Lee crowned the winner, drew almost exactly 10 million viewers for the Peacock on Wednesday night. Bolstered by a robust, velvety Cher performance, [...]

  • Ava-Mark-Split

    Ava DuVernay, Mark Ruffalo Selected for SAG-AFTRA Foundation Honors

    Ava DuVernay and Mark Ruffalo have been selected by the SAG-AFTRA Foundation for its fourth Annual Patron of the Artists Awards. The awards will be presented on Nov. 7 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. The show benefits the nonprofit SAG-AFTRA Foundation and is not televised. Previous SAG-AFTRA Foundation Patron of the [...]

  • Programme Name: The Cry - TX:

    Brazil, U.K. Lead International Emmy Awards Nominations

    Brazil and the U.K. lead the pack in this year’s International Emmy Awards nominations, which span 21 countries across 11 categories. Titles and talent from Britain and Brazil will vie with other hopefuls for the trophy in five categories: drama, best performance by an actor, best performance by an actress, arts programming and documentary. Brazilian [...]

  • Hailee Steinfeld photographed by Art Streiber

    Hailee Steinfeld Drops New Song From Apple TV Series ‘Dickinson’

    Oscar-nominated actress and singer Hailee Steinfeld dropped a new song on Thursday, “Afterlife (Dickinson)” from the upcoming Apple TV+ series “Dickinson,” in which she stars and serves as an executive producer. According to the announcement, Steinfeld drew lyrical inspiration from her character, Emily Dickinson, and the themes and ideas in many of her literary works. [...]

  • Kim Kardashian Kim Kardashian out and

    Nielsen Now Tracks Celebs' Social-Media Touts of TV Shows

    Nielsen is providing a new lens into how celebrities and talent can boost the exposure of TV shows on social media. The measurement company announced that its Social Content Ratings solution now measures talent promotion of television programs across Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. According to Nielsen, talent now drives nearly 60% of all social engagement [...]

  • Ree with Sticky Pork

    Food Network Strikes Three-Year Pact With Ree Drummond, 'The Pioneer Woman'

    Ree Drummond will be offering Food Network viewers more hearty family meals for the next three years. Drummond, who has hosted “The Pioneer Woman” on the Discovery-owned network since 2011, has signed a new deal with the outlet that calls for new episodes of her program. “Ree Drummond’s incredible following and popularity has led her [...]

  • David Zaslav

    Steven Spielberg's 'Why We Hate' Is More Timely Than Ever, David Zaslav Says

    The political state of the world today has made the upcoming docuseries “Why We Hate” relevant in a way that its producers, Steven Spielberg and Alex Gibney, hardly expected when they began developing the project five years ago, Discovery president and CEO David Zaslav said Thursday. “Things are much more of a challenge and hate [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content