Will Oscar reward the Golden Globes winners?
Are the Golden Globes an accurate predictor of the Academy Awards? Yes and no. They are an important factor, but they're only one piece of the awards-season pie. Here's how Sunday's Globes results may affect this year's Oscar race (nominations will be announced on Feb. 11).
For six years running, one of the two Best Picture winners at the Globes has gone on to win the big Oscar. So are ''Chicago'' and ''The Hours'' now the two odds-on favorites to walk away with the grand prize on March 23? Sure, but we knew that BEFORE the Golden Globes were handed out.
Martin Scorsese's first-ever Globe win could very well foreshadow his first-ever Oscar win as well. His victory also helps ''Gangs of New York's'' overall Oscar chances. But if a film like ''Chicago'' or ''The Hours'' dominates the nominations, a relative rookie like Rob Marshall or Stephen Daldry could steal it.
The Hollywood Foreign Press just loves Jack Nicholson (he now has six Golden Globe trophies, plus a lifetime achievement award). He's now even more of a lock for his 12th Oscar nod this year. But how about musical/comedy winner Richard Gere? His chances are certainly greater for his first Oscar recognition, but he's still no sure thing in such a crowded field. Remember: Last year's Globe winner, ''The Royal Tenenbaums''' Gene Hackman, was snubbed by the Academy.
Victories by ''The Hours''' Nicole Kidman and ''Chicago'''s Renée Zellweger accomplished something interesting: They tightened this year's Best Actress race. Before Sunday, the trophy already had Julianne Moore's name engraved on it. But now, it's a bona fide three-way race. Still, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has always exhibited a soft spot for Kidman -- she now has three Golden Globes, equaling her ex-husband, Tom Cruise.
Not much has changed here. ''Adaptation'' scene-stealer Chris Cooper emerged victorious at the Globes, but contenders like ''Far From Heaven'''s Dennis Quaid and ''Road to Perdition'''s Paul Newman are still hot on his heels. Perhaps the Screen Actors Guild awards might clarify things on March 9.
Many award-watchers expected Kathy Bates to walk away with the Globe for ''About Schmidt.'' But Meryl Streep's win proves she's in strong contention for her first Oscar in 20 years. One sure bet: Once ''Chicago'''s Catherine Zeta-Jones enters this race (she was considered a lead actress by the Globes), she'll unleash all that jazz on the competition.