Just today, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, who are directly involved with the annual Golden Globe Awards, have passed a sweeping set of reforms, aiming to appease individuals who partook in the boycott against the organization after a February 2021 exposé about the organization’s demographics and conduct.
Time’s Up and a coalition of more than 100 PR firms on both sides of the Atlantic led a pressure campaign that resulted in talent, studios, and networks saying they would not work with the HFPA until meaningful change was enacted. Additionally, NBC, the network that typically broadcasts the yearly awards ceremony said that it would no longer do so starting in 2022.
The slate of new bylaws, which were presented to the organization’s 84 members by its board back in May, had to secure the support of at least two-thirds of the membership — or 56 members — in order to pass. The board had threatened to resign if the members did not vote yes. The vote took place on Wednesday night and was certified by Ernst & Young.
In a statement, HFPA board president Ali Sar said “Three months ago, we made a promise to commit to transformational change, and with this vote we kept the last and most significant promise in reimagining the HFPA and our role in the industry”. He further commented, “All of these promised reforms can serve as industry benchmarks and allow us to once again partner meaningfully with Hollywood moving forward.”
Now, the board is scheduled to meet on Thursday and set the date for elections to choose a new board which is set to be comprised of twelve HFPA members and three non-members. In addition to this, the organization has added an application form to its website that allows any journalist to apply for membership, so long as they meet the required criteria.
The new measure states that there must be 20 brand new members this year and are said to be focusing primarily on introducing Black members. They also want to increase the membership percentage by 50% over the course of the next 18 months.
The HFPA is opening itself up to a larger pool of candidates by dropping its SoCal residency requirement and expanding eligibility to any qualified journalist living in the U.S. who works for a foreign publication.
“These new bylaws bring accountability, inclusion and transparency within our association, and today’s vote is a testament to the dedication and commitment of our members to reflect, educate themselves, and build a better organization,” HFPA vice president Helen Hoehne said in a statement. “But we know the hard work starts now, and we invite our partners throughout the industry to join us in our mission to bring Hollywood to the world in a more inclusive and diverse manner.”
For more updates, stay tuned to Awards Radar.