Scarlett Johansson Calls Out HFPA For ‘Sexist Questions,’ Urges Actors To ‘Step Back’ From Golden Globes
Both companies and actors have started to distance themselves from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), calling for extensive reforms. The HFPA hosts the annual Golden Globes Awards and has recently faced criticism because of its lack of diversity and low ethics standards.
Scarlett Johansson released a statement on Saturday that read, “Unless there is necessary fundamental reform within the organization, I believe it is time that we take a step back from the HFPA.” Johansson claims to have been on the receiving end of “sexist questions and remarks” during press conferences.
Her full statement read, “As an actor promoting a film, one is expected to participate in awards season by attending press conferences as well as awards shows… In the past, this has often meant facing sexist questions and remarks by certain HFPA members that bordered on sexual harassment. It is the exact reason why I, for many years, refused to participate in their conferences. The HFPA is an organization that was legitimized by the likes of Harvey Weinstein to amass momentum for Academy recognition and the industry followed suit. Unless there is necessary fundamental reform within the organization, I believe it is time that we take a step back from the HFPA and focus on the importance and strength of unity within our unions and the industry as a whole.”
The release of Johansson’s statement follows that of Mark Ruffalo, the first Hollywood A-lister to comment on the HFPA, who himself won a Golden Globe earlier this year. The two actors are also joined by Time’s Up, a coalition of PR firms, Amazon and Netflix in their comments about overhauling the organization.
Ruffalo said, “It’s discouraging to see the HFPA, which has gained prominence and profited handsomely from their involvement with filmmakers and actors, resist the change that is being asked of them from many of the groups that have been most disenfranchised by their culture of secrecy and exclusion. Now is the time to step up and right the wrongs of the past. Our industry is embracing the opportunity for greater equality in this beautiful moment. It is not perfect and long overdue but it is clear what must happen and how. The Justice Movement is offering all of us, the HFPA, and every other entertainment entity, a good way forward. We should all follow suit. It is our audiences and our highest sense of decency that we are ultimately serving with these changes. They are both deserving.”