The Oscars got
their front-runners on Monday: Dreamgirls and
Babel are likely to duke it out for best film,
while Helen Mirren and Forest Whitaker take the lead
in the fight for best actors.
All won Golden
Globes and with that the vital momentum needed to move
toward the big prize, the February 25 Oscars.
produced by the minuscule Hollywood Foreign Press
Association, may not always predict the final Oscar winners,
but they help set the debate in the hectic weeks
leading up to the film industry's highest honors.
The list of Globe
winners this year pretty well complied with
conventional wisdom, although some Oscars voters may find
the selection of Babel as 2006's best drama a
bit too gut-wrenching. A story about the globalization
of pain and suffering, Babel was filmed in five
languages in four countries and is far from
traditional Hollywood fare.
It is expected to
go up against Dreamgirls, director Martin
Scorsese's gangster drama The Departed, quirky
family film Little Miss Sunshine, and The
Queen, which stars Mirren, when Oscar nominations
are announced on January 23.
Scorsese left the
Globes a happy man too--he was named best director for
The Departed, giving his film a chance for
Although he has
created classic films like Raging Bull and
Taxi Driver, Scorsese has never won an
Oscar for best film or best director, and the Hollywood that
denied him those prizes may be ready to show its sentimental
Mirren stopped a
reporter when he tried to ask a question about her Oscar
chances. She won the best actress in a drama award for her
portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II in The Queen.
THE BIG O
"No stop," she
told the reporter. "It's the big O. I never had a big
O. They say the Earth moves. I can't wait."
name was announced as winner of best drama for his
portrayal of the brutal Ugandan dictator Idi Amin, he jumped
up. Winning, he said, "was like a jolt of
Dreamgirls won three awards, more than any
other film, including best supporting actor and actress for
Eddie Murphy and Jennifer Hudson.
Babel earned only one award but it was a big
one--best film drama. It entered the Golden Globes as
the most nominated movie, with seven nominations.
director, Mexico's Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, noted the
long and trying journey to get his movie made across three
continents--Africa, North America, and Asia.
Babel transcended borders with its
"I think the
power of cinema is universal and at the end, emotion
doesn't need translation and that's the beauty of it."
Sacha Baron Cohen, who plays a dimwitted reporter in
Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit
Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, was given the award
for best actor in a film musical or comedy.
characteristically dry manner, Cohen thanked his costar, Ken
Davitian, who sat on his face in a naked wrestling match in
"I was faced with
a choice--death or to breathe in the air that had
been trapped in a small pocket between his buttocks for 30
years," Cohen joked. "Kenneth, if it was not for that
rancid bubble, I would not be here today."
In the other top
film honor Meryl Streep won the award for best actress
in a comedy for her portrayal of a wicked fashion editor in
The Devil Wears Prada. It was the sixth Golden
Globe of Streep's career. (Reuters)