Young “Elvis” star Austin Butler and veteran actress Michelle Yeoh took home the best picture awards at Tuesday’s Golden Globes ceremony, as Hollywood returned to welcome a show that was sidelined by a diversity and ethics scandal had been.
Butler, 31, won Best Actor in a Drama Motion Picture for his portrayal of rock music legend Elvis Presley and seemed overwhelmed to accept the honor in front of many of show business’ top names.
“I’m in this room with all my heroes,” Butler said. “I can’t believe I’m here.
“Brad (Pitt), I love you. Quentin (Tarantino), I printed the script of ‘Pulp Fiction’ when I was 12 years old.”
Yeoh, who was honored for her starring role in the dimension leap action film Everything Everywhere All at Once, took the stage after her name was called and said she’s going to “just stand here and take it all in.”
“Hollywood was a dream come true until I came here,” added the Malaysian actress of Chinese descent, noting that she was labeled as a “minority” and asked if she could speak English early in her career.
Forty years later, “It’s been an amazing journey and an incredible struggle to be here today, but I think it was worth it,” she said.
Colin Farrell won Lead in a Movie Musical or Comedy for portraying Padraic Suilleabhain, a man trying to mend a broken friendship, in the dark Irish comedy The Banshees of Inisherin.
Farrell thanked his castmates, including “Jenny the Donkey.”
Celebrities and broadcaster NBC abandoned the 2022 Globes because of ethical errors at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), the group that awards the awards.
A larger, more diverse membership and other changes made by the HFPA convinced many of the biggest stars in film and television to support this year’s ceremony, which publicizes winners and nominees and often increases their chances of winning the Oscars.
The show performed much like previous years, except for a scathing monologue from comedian and host Jerrod Carmichael, who opened the show with a quip, “I’m here because I’m black.”
“One day you make mint tea at home. The next day, you’re invited to be the black face of an embattled white organization,” he said at the ceremony, which was broadcast live on Comcast Corp’s NBC network CMCSA.O and streamed on Peacock.
Other honorees included Black Panther actress Angela Bassett, who won a supporting actress award for her role as Queen Ramonda in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
“We showed the world what Black unity, leadership and love looks like beyond, behind and in front of the camera,” Bassett said while holding her trophy.
The flashy “Elvis” biopic and sci-fi blockbuster “Avatar: The Way of Water” vied for the top award for Best Drama Film against Steven Spielberg’s coming-of-age films “The Fabelmans” and “Tar” starring Cate Blanchett as the sneaky orchestra conductor.
Top Gun: Maverick was also in, though the military action film’s chances were likely hurt by the star returning Tom Cruise’s Globe statues in protest in 2021, pricing experts have said.
Responding to a Los Angeles Times investigation that found the HFPA had no black journalists among its ranks, Cruise accused members of soliciting favors from celebrities and film studios.
In the TV categories, Abbott Elementary creator and star Quinta Brunson won Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy.
Around 200 journalists and others from the international film industry voted on this year’s Globes. According to the HFPA, nearly 52% of these voters are racially and ethnically diverse, including 10% black.