Danny Boyle’s “Slumdog Millionaire” led the 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards, taking awards for best motion picture drama, best director (Boyle), best screenplay (Simon Beaufoy) and best musical score (A.R. Rahman). Its wins were overshadowed only by the unprecedented double-acting win of Kate Winslet for both best actress (drama) in “Revolutionary Road” and best supporting actress in “The Reader.” Other major winners included “Vicky Cristina Barcelona” for best motion picture comedy or musical and Mickey Rourke for best actor (drama) in “The Wrestler,” the only other double winner (it also took a trophy for best song).
All of the acting winners were first time Globe winners (except Winslet, who technically had won previously for “Reader” when she won for “Road”), including Rourke, best actor (comedy or musical) Colin Farrell, best actress (comedy or musical) Sally Hawkins, and best supporting actor Heath Ledger. In fact, the only repeat winner was best original song winner Bruce Springsteen, who had won in the same category sixteen years ago for “Philadelphia”‘s “Streets of Philadelphia.”
In relation to next months Academy Awards, notable is that neither of the Globe best picture winners have gone on to win best picture at the Oscars in the past three years (“Atonement,” “Sweeney Todd,” “Babel,” “Dreamgirls,” “The Aviator” and “Sideways”). However, in the lead acting categories, all Oscar winners have previously won a Golden Globe every year since 2002 (when Adrien Brody did not win a Globe).
Winslet was the first winner of the night receiving her first of two awards. Thanking the late Sydney Pollack and Anthony Minghella, producers of “The Reader,” Winslet said, “I hope they would have been proud.” And then, she breathlessly accepted the lead actress award, saying, “Thank you so much” twice, before pausing to compose herself and thank those involved. Crying as she thanked co-star Leonardo DiCaprio and then heaped praise on her husband, “Road” director Sam Mendes. “Thank you for directing this movie, babe…and for killing us every day,” Winslet said, “It’s made me love you more.”
After stumbling slightly en route to the stage, Mickey Rourke accepted his trophy for best actor in a motion picture (drama). He thanked fimmaker Darren Aronofsky for believing in him. “He brought the best of out me,” Rourke said, “He hates it when I say he’s tough, but he is one tough son of a bitch,” Rourke continued, the camera then cutting to a smiling Aronfsky in the audience, flipping him off.
Early in the telecast evening, actress Sally Hawkins became quite emotional on stage. “Oh my goodness,” said Hawkins, accepting the award for best actress (musical or comedy), clearly overwhelmed by the moment. Putting her trophy down on the stage as she spoke, she noted, “I’ll get it in a minute.” She then praised her fellow nominees in the category as, “exceptional goddesses who were nominated.” Getting to her cast and co-stars Hawkins gave her take, “For me this film was about love, both my experience on screen and behind it…”
In a more somber moment, Heath Ledger was posthumously awarded the best supporting actor prize for his work as the Joker on “The Dark Knight.” After he was announced as the winner, organizers screened a clip from the movie and director Christopher Nolan accepted the award. Citing the “hole ripped in the future of cinema” at the death of Ledger, Nolan walked to the stage to a standing ovation in Ledger’s honor.
Later, accepting the Golden Globe award for best foreign language film, “Waltz With Bashir” director Ari Folman saluted the eight production babies born during the four years spent making the movie in Tel Aviv. “I hope that one day, when they grow up, they will watch this film together and they will see the war that takes place like an ancient video game that has nothing to do with their lives whatsoever.”
Introducing the best song category, Sting took the stage sporting a healthy beard and gave the award to a contemporary. Bruce Springsteen, accepted the award for his work on “The Wrestler” and saluted Mickey Rourke for bringing him onto the project. And quipped about a fellow nominee, “This is the only time I am going to be in competition with Clint Eastwood, I know that for sure.”
The complete list of Golden Globe film winners:
BEST MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA
Fox Searchlight Pictures and Warner Bros.; Fox Searchlight Pictures and Warner Bros.
BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS – DRAMA
Kate Winslet, “Revolutionary Road”
BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR – DRAMA
Mickey Rourke, “The Wrestler”
BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM
Walt Disney Pictures and Pixar Animation Studios; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
“Waltz With Bashir” (Israel)
The Country of Israel
Bridgit Folman Film Gang/Les Films D’Ici/Razor Films/Arte France/ITVS International; Sony Pictures Classics
BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MOTION PICTURE
Kate Winslet, “The Reader”
BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MOTION PICTURE
Heath Ledger, “The Dark Knight”
BEST MOTION PICTURE – MUSICAL OR COMEDY
“Vicky Cristina Barcelona”
Mediapro; The Weinstein Company
BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS – MUSICAL OR COMEDY
Sally Hawkins, “Happy-Go-Lucky”
BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR – MUSICAL OR COMEDY
Colin Farrell, “In Bruges”
Danny Boyle, “Slumdog Millionaire”
Written by Simon Beaufoy
BEST ORIGINAL SCORE – MOTION PICTURE
Composed by A. R. Rahman
BEST ORIGINAL SONG – MOTION PICTURE
Bruce Springsteen, “The Wrestler”
CECIL B. DEMILLE AWARD
[Peter Knegt and Brian Brooks contributed to this article.]