This Sunday, January 12, the 71st annual Golden Globes will air on NBC. The award ceremony, hosted by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, celebrates the best in film and television. It also often gives a good indication of what we can expect to see when Academy Award nominations are released on January 16. If you’re a movie fan, there are plenty of reasons to watch the Golden Globes — from celebrity appearances to emotional acceptance speeches, it’s sure to be an entertaining event. Here are five things to look out for if you’ll be tuning in.
1. Oscar front-runners emerging
There are 12 films nominated for Best Picture at the Golden Globes — six for Best Musical or Comedy, and six for Best Drama. While it’s not always the case, most years the Best Picture nominations for the Academy Awards are vastly similar to those honored by the HFPA. And it’s rarely the case that wins in those category doesn’t go on to be nominated for Oscar’s top honor. Pundits and fans will be watching closely to see which films rise to the top on Sunday night for early clues on where the Academy’s loyalties may lie this year.
2. It’s Ladies Night
The year 2013 was a stand-out year for female performers with countless exciting and inspiring performances on both the big and the small screen. Between the powerhouse hosting duo Amy Poehler and Tina Fey and the exciting crop of talented women nominated for the night’s top prizes in the Best Actress — Drama, Best Actress — Comedy or Musical, and Best Supporting Actress categories, Sunday night is sure to be remembered as a night where ladies dominated in more ways than one. Several former nominees and winners — including Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Julia Roberts and Jennifer Lawrence — will face are up for the Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress trophies. But there’s also a chance that a slew of Globes rookies, including Lupita Nyong’o, Sally Hawkins, or Greta Gurwig could pull off a win.
3. Is it Leo’s Night?
Leonardo DiCaprio has been a household name since he rose to fame with 1997’s Titanic. But while the once-heartthrob and oft-nominated actor has spent years building his credibility as a serious actor and has been nominated multiple times for major Golden Globe awards, he’s won only one since his career picked up steam in the early 2000 — and he’s never won an Oscar. This year, he’s nominated for Best Actor for his performance in Martin Scorcese’s raucous The Wolf of Wall Street. If the glowing reviews of his performance are any indication, he’s a serious contender to take home the Best Actor — Musical or Comedy statue, which could provide serious momentum going into Oscar season.
4. Victory lap for Breaking Bad?
In 2013, one of television’s most critically acclaimed dramas, Breaking Bad, ended its triumphant run on AMC. Unlike many other favored television dramas, most critics agree that it ended on a tremendous high note. While the show has in the past mainly been awarded for its acting and writing, it did take home the Best Drama statue at the Emmy’s last year for its penultimate season. The Golden Globes are the first test of whether the show will reap awards as a going away gift of sorts. We’ll be watching to see if the mad story of Walter White starts to pick up additional accolades in 2014.