The Golden Globes ceremony is often described as Hollywood's biggest party. It unites the best from both television and film and allows these high-profile stars to eat, drink, and be merry as they win awards. As a result, the live telecast is a little hard to control at times. But when you add Zoom and weird connections, like they had to in order to make the 2021 Globes possible, and it's anyone's guess as to how long the Golden Globes are.
There were a few pre-shows on E! and on NBC, respectively, but they mostly included clips of past Globes or pre-interviews with nominated talent. For once, you can't end up turning a three-hour event into a seven-hour one iby watching every minute of red carpet and ceremony coverage.
As usual, it's also possible the three-hour ceremony will last a little longer than expected. It is a live show with technical issues, after all. One of the biggest reasons that award shows run over is because the stars' speeches can get lengthy. It's hard to blame them for wanting their moment in the spotlight after winning such a prestigious award.
However, unlike in normal years, when the orchestra begins to play after the allotted speech time expires and some people just keep right on talking, the showrunners technically have all the control. They can just cut someone's Zoom feed instead. So no Guillermo Del Toro chiding the play-off music this year, like he did during the 2018 telecast after winning Best Director for The Shape of Water. "Lower the music," he said. "It's taken 25 years. Give me a minute. Give me a minute!"
According to The Telegraph, during the 2017 telecast, actors' speeches were often quickly hit with music encouraging them to leave the stage. Many of them also pointed out that the teleprompter was warning them to hurry up (which, by the way, just lengthened the speeches).
"Yes, wrap up, wrap up, come on, wrap up," Hugh Laurie noted during his Best Supporting Actor speech for The Night Manager.
"'Please wrap up.' Yeah, I'm on it," Claire Foy added during her Best Actress speech for The Crown.
But even without the usual drunken antics, extended speeches, there are 25-plus categories to name winners for. Luckily, the Golden Globes are actually pretty good about ending around that three-hour mark. The 2017 show ended exactly when it was supposed to, and both the 2018 and 2019 shows were only slightly longer than the allotted three hours.
Just be glad it's not 2008, when the ceremony was shortened to an hour-long press conference due to the Writers Guild strike. To fill time, NBC had to invent a special two-hour Dateline pre-show, which Variety reported was comprised of awkward fluff segments and extended, snoozy features on the nominees.
Update: This story was originally published in January 2020. It has been updated to reflect the 2021 Globes ceremony.