Golden Globes Awarded Without Stars, Glitz

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The Golden Globe Awards proceed without benefit of the red carpet, fabulous gowns and jewelry... and the stars. In light of the ongoing writers' strike, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association canceled the awards show and replaced it with a televised news conference.

RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

The Golden Globes came to Hollywood last night, but Hollywood didn't come to the Golden Globes.

Mr. BILLY BUSH (Co-Host, "Access Hollywood") This is the scene today. There is not a star to be found. Due to the Writers Guild strike, the Golden Globes ceremony has been canceled.

MONTAGNE: That's Billy Bush of NBC's "Access Hollywood," co-anchoring the show that replaced the show that didn't happen.

In the end, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association announced the winners in a news conference. Among them, the movie "Atonement" took the Best Drama award, with Daniel Day-Lewis and Julie Christie taking top honors for dramatic acting. The winner for Best Musical Movie, "Sweeney Todd," along with its star Johnny Depp.

To get a back story, we called MORNING EDITION commentator, writer and man about Hollywood, John Ridley.

Good morning.

JOHN RIDLEY: Hey, Renee. How are you?

MONTAGNE: So, did you host a Golden Globe press conference watching party at your house last night?

RIDLEY: Only a party if you consider my wife and our dogs party environment. Otherwise, we were taking the austerity path, along with the rest of the Hollywood. We cut back this year.

MONTAGNE: For those who missed the show and you could have probably if you blinked - I think it was only about half an hour long, instead of the usual three-some hours - tell us about the fashion.

RIDLEY: There was a considerable lack of fashion this year. Instead of having the night of the thousand stars you normally get with the Golden Globes, it was more like night of the four infotainment news readers. So you had Nancy O'Dell and Billy Bush from "Access Hollywood," and that's about it. So Nancy O'Dell looked lovely, and Billy Bush looked functional.

(Soundbite of laughter)

MONTAGNE: Now, there are estimates that the ripple effect of the cancellation of this awards show alone cost the city tens of millions of dollars, for - in all kind of things - fashion designers, hair dressers, makeup artists, jewelers, limo drivers, restaurant staff, probably even dermatologists. This could have been a big night for many of them.

RIDLEY: It sounds kind of jokey, to talk about the limo drivers, hair and makeup. But honestly, that's a lot of what Los Angeles is about. It's entertainment-driven. And these folks are being hit hard. One estimate, almost $80 million - eight, zero million dollars - in one weekend lost to the city. By the way, that's no joke. We're facing a major budget shortfall in the billions in California. To lose $80 million to the city and the state, we really can't afford that.

MONTAGNE: So the Golden Globes have been lost. But what about the ultimate red carpet event? Do you think the writers strike will be resolved in time for the Oscars to take place next month?

RIDLEY: Well, Renee, if you're going to talk about the strike, in the interest of disclosure, I have to tell people I've actually distanced myself from the Writers Guild, although I'm a writer. But you have to look at the totality of what's going on here in Hollywood. And I think for all of us out here, even though award shows - sometimes they're a little over the top, they're a big deal here in Los Angeles. They're big deal to the artists and artisans, and they're big deal to the economy.

I think a lot of people felt badly about not having this award show this past week. And now that it's gone and we sort of lost it - and I think looking forward to the Oscars, even if that Writers Guild strike is not resolved, it'll be interesting to see if some of these actors think, you know what? It's more important that the show goes on and that we honor our own than to worry about a strike, which is really starting to damage the economy of Los Angeles.

MONTAGNE: John, thanks very much.

RIDLEY: Thank you, Renee. It was a pleasure, as always.

MONTAGNE: That's MORNING EDITION commentator John Ridley, who, as he just said, has publicly broken with the Writers Guild over the strike.

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