In introducing Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, Samberg referenced the plot of the nominated film, specifically the tragic end of Cooper's Jackson, who dies by suicide.
"He discovered Ally and she discovered him in the garage," Samberg said before Lady Gaga and Cooper took the stage.
In the film, Cooper's character dies in the garage of his home. However, Gaga's character does not discover his body.
Twitter users watching the show at home immediately got the reference — and many didn't find the joke particularly funny.
"The remark by Andy Samberg about Ally discovering Jackson in the garage was beyond tasteless."
"Okay, I love you Andy, but... not cool."
"ANDY WTF that ain’t right. I love you, but that ain’t right. Bad taste."
"That was unnecessary and too soon."
"Absolutely outraged at the fact that @thelonelyisland just made a suicide joke on live television. A Star is Born was a beautiful movie and joking about a worldwide dilemma is disgusting."
"Making a joke of addiction and suicide. Way to go #goldenglobes I am mortified. 'She found him in the garage.' How fucking dare you."
"Wondering why the Golden Globes’ writers think it was appropriate for Andy Samberg to make a joke about suicide in the first 10 mins of the Golden Globes. #shameonyou"
"Sandberg’s joke about Cooper & Gaga '...She found him in the garage' was tasteless, inappropriate and not the least bit funny. I’m sure everyone who has lost someone to suicide was mortified"
Due to the plot point surrounding Jackson's death, A Star Is Born received a trigger warning before screenings in New Zealand.
If you are thinking about suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or the Suicide Crisis Line at 1-800-784-2433.