LGBTQ+ people, real and fictional, shine at the 2023 Golden Globes

Here are some of the amazing queer (and queer-adjacent) honourees from this year’s Golden Globes ceremony.

A photo of the queer community and its allies commemorated at this years Golden Globes. Pictured from right to left: Ryan Murphy, Jennifer Coolidge, Emma D’Arcy, Niecy Nash-Betts, Aubrey Plaza.
Image: Via Twitter: @ahszone @GettyVIP @HOTDsource @etnow @chaoticwxtch

Both the LGBTQ+ community and its allies shone at the 2023 Golden Globes. A slew of talented queer folk was nominated, as well as other actors playing LGBTQ+ roles. Several diverse stories from film and television were honoured at the event. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), the body that organises the Golden Globes ceremony, returned with a televised event following last year’s controversy.

After facing criticising backlash for lack of diversity within its organisation, the HFPA chose not to hold the event publicly, instead announcing the winners via social media. One of the most notable mentions from this year’s ceremony, held in The Beverly Hilton on January 10, was Ryan Murphy’s acceptance of the Carol Burnett Award.

The accolade honours excellence in the television category and Murphy filled his acceptance speech with praise for his fellow LGBTQ+ contributors. He firstly acknowledged Michaela Jaé Rodriguez, who last year won Best Actress in a TV Drama at the untelevised event.

Murphy urged the watching audience to offer Rodriguez the “standing ovation she deserved for making history” as the first trans woman to win the award. Ryan Murphy then moved to honour Billy Porter, calling him “one of the most iconic actors of his generation,” who has “changed our perceptions by changing fashion.”

The writer, director and producer also highlighted the hardships faced by the LGBTQ+ community, saying that “It’s hard being an LGBTQ kid in America. In fact, all over the world, then and now. And I have one word for you: Florida.” In July 2022, Florida’s maligned ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill came into effect, prohibiting references to sexual orientation or gender identity in classrooms. Among other things the state also banned gender-affirming healthcare for minors in November of that year.

Another Golden Globes attendee who wasn’t afraid to address the previous year’s controversy was its host, LGBTQ+ comedian Jerrod Carmichael. Carmichael told the audience at last night’s event that he took the job of hosting “because I’m Black”.

The actor, writer, and filmmaker continued: “This show, the Golden Globe Awards, did not air last year, because the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which I won’t say they were a racist organisation, but they didn’t have a single black member until George Floyd died,”

He added: “I took this job assuming they hadn’t changed at all. Regardless of whatever the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s past may be, this is an evening where we get to celebrate. And I think this industry deserves evenings like these. And I’m happy to be here.”

Queer storylines also won big at the Golden Globes, with Cate Blanchett in receipt of Best Actress in a Motion Picture for her role in Tár. In the film, Blanchett plays the role of a fictitious lesbian conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic. The movie was also a big contender for Best Motion Picture, though Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans took home the prize.

Gay icon Jennifer Coolidge was awarded Best Supporting Actress for her role as Tanya McQuoid-Hunt in HBO’s White Lotus. Gay actor Jeremy Pope was nominated for Best Actor in a Motion Picture, with his contending role as Ellis French in The Inspection. Among other queer nominees was Aubrey Plaza for her role in White Lotus, as well as gay Belgian director Lukas Dhont for his coming-of-age film Close.

House of the Dragon star Emma D’Arcy told E! that their nomination “implies the space for trans people and gender non-conforming people is getting bigger.” D’Arcy added that being at the ceremony was “surreal” and that they felt immensely “privileged” for their recognition.

Nominated for her role in Monster: Dahmer – The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, Niecy Nash-Betts took to the stage to present the trophy for Best Actress in a Musical/Comedy Series. She approached the stage and replied to the applauding reception from the audience, saying “I don’t know if you’re clapping because you like the dress, because I’m here, or because I’m gay now, but I’ll take it!”

No matter the number of awards taken home, this year saw a mountain of LGBTQ+ representation on the Golden Globes stage and indeed, on-screen. Though much work is left to be done, queer audiences worldwide can enjoy the many queer films coming this year.

© 2023 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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