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  • Writer's pictureJanice Lin

Wait, What? Which White Awards?

What is the difference between the Golden Globe Awards, Oscar Academy Awards, Tony Awards, Emmy Awards, and Grammy Awards? They all seem to blur together: award shows for famous people to dress up and show off their talents. After deep research on the web for hours -- or a quick Google Search (you will never know the truth) -- I learned that what separates them is which category of the arts and entertainment they are for.

For example, the Golden Globe Awards are for television and films and take place in February. The Oscars Academy Awards are for movies and occur in April. On the other hand, the Emmy Awards are solely for television and occur in January. For all intents and purposes, the Golden Globe Awards are a ripoff and a combination of the Oscar Awards and the Emmy Awards, which is also known to have a much better after-party. The Oscar Awards and Emmy Awards are going through a midlife crisis of sorts, questioning their own existence right now. The Tony Awards are for musicals and theater and transpire during June. Finally, the Grammy Awards are for music and happen in March. Honestly, tell me who, besides the BTS Army, watched the Grammy Awards to know who won.

At this year’s Golden Globes, two famous female comedian hosts were making jokes on the two different coasts. In a more elevated and glamorous version of a Zoom meeting, Tina Fey spoke from New York City while Amy Poehler spoke from Beverly Hills. At one point, we saw Fey reach out with her left hand as if she was touching Poehler’s hair. Fey’s hand seemed to be lagging--maybe because it was someone else’s hand or because of the split screen which helped people see them both at the same time. Truly, I marvel at the technological improvements showcased during this year’s Global pandemic.

On a more serious note, all the award shows have another thing in common, which does not paint them in the best light: not enough diversity. Casting diverse actors and actresses as leads is still a problem for Hollywood and the entertainment industry at large. Movies like Crazy Rich Asians and Roma, and TV shows like Black-ish are still not considered mainstream right now. Having a cast and crew that represents and reflects people from all different backgrounds seems to be a difficult task for the arts, but it should not be.

To counter that unfortunate circumstance, the Golden Globes awarded Daniel Kaluuya the best supporting actor as Fred Hampton in Judas and the Black Messiah. As he gave an acceptance speech, there was no audio coming out. Welp, someone is getting fired. Laura Dern, the presenter for this award, stood there awkwardly as she sent her congratulations. When the problem was fixed, Kaluuya laughed while saying, “You did me dirty!... Can you hear me now?” Since when has the Golden Globes become a Google Meet Classroom where the teacher is muted by a mischievous student (which happened in my own English class)?

“You did me dirty!... Can you hear me now?”

Remember the infamous 2017 Oscars switch up? La La Land was first mistakenly announced as the best picture. While the recipients gave their speech, to everybody’s surprise, a competing and completely different film, Moonlight, was revealed as the real winner.

Could there be two more different movies? For those who have not watched both movies, La La Land is a conventional, cheesy rom-com in Los Angeles about aspiring movie stars and musicians with a predictable storyline. On the other hand, Moonlight follows a young black man growing up in Miami, and dealing with his own identity and homosexuality during his adolescence, starring Mahershala Ali, Andre Holland, Trevante Rhodes, Ashton Sanders, Janelle Monae. When Moonlight won best picture at the Oscars, it broke many historical barriers, given its all black cast and its focus on the LGBTQ+ community. Finally these people and the communities they represent were given the long-overdue recognition they deserve.

In the spirit of the evermore growing number of shows and awards, I, Janice Lin, am proposing yet another award: the Chadwick Boseman Diversity Award for the most equitable award show. As a result, the Golden Globe Awards, Oscar Academy Awards, Tony Awards, Emmy Awards, and Grammy Awards (and all international award shows like Venice Film Festival and Tokyo International Film Festival) will all compete to become more reflective of our multifaceted society.


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