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Known worldwide for its glittering Golden Globe Awards ceremony held every January. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association is more then simply an award ceremony. They have a mission. And the mission is to establish favorable relations and cultural ties between foreign countries and the United States of America by the dissemination of information concerning the American culture and traditions as depicted in motion pictures and television through news media in various foreign countries:
Here is a brief history of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association:
The HFPA organization has its roots in the early 1940s when Pearl Harbor had drawn America into World War II. Audiences, hungry for diversion, were seeking out films offering escape, inspiration and entertainment; and filmmakers such as Orson Welles, Preston Sturges, Darryl Zanuck and Michael Curtiz were working hard to fulfill the need. Amid the turmoil of war and the difficulties with communications, a handful of Los Angeles-based overseas journalists banded together to share contacts, information and material. The idea was not a new one: previously, in 1928 the Hollywood Association of Foreign Correspondents (HAFCO) had been formed and, in 1935, the Foreign Press Society appeared. Both were short-lived, although the HAFCO had a brief moment in the spotlight when Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford and other celebrities showed up at an International Ball the group organized at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.
In 1943 the journalists, led by the correspondent for Britain's Daily Mail, formed the Hollywood Foreign Correspondents Association and conceived the motto Unity Without Discrimination of Religion or Race. It was an uphill struggle at first as the film industry had not yet realized the importance of foreign markets. At first the members held informal gatherings in private homes. As the membership grew, HFPA meetings were held in larger quarters, with the association selecting the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel as the location for group functions.
The group's first special event was a luncheon in December 1947, at which a meritorious plaque was awarded to Henry M. Warner, president of Warner Bros., in recognition of his humanitarian work as the principal sponsor of the
Friendship Train, which left Hollywood with food, clothing and medical supplies for the needy of Europe.
As representatives of the world press, the group's members felt it was incumbent upon them to give their audience their judgments as to Hollywood's finest productions. The organization's first awards presentation for distinguished achievements in the film industry took place in early 1944 with an informal ceremony at 20th Century Fox. There, Jennifer Jones was awarded Best Actress honors for The Song of Bernadette, which also won for Best Film, while Paul Lukas took home Best Actor laurels for Watch on the Rhine. Awards were presented in the form of scrolls.
The following year, the members of the association held a contest to find a design for a statuette that would best represent the overall aims of the organization. Marina Cisternas, president of the group in 1945-46, presented the idea for a golden globe encircled with a strip of motion picture film, and mounted on a pedestal.
In conjunction with the Golden Globes presentation, the Hollywood Foreign Correspondents Association held its first gala social event in 1945 with a formal banquet at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Going My Way won for Best Picture, while Ingrid Bergman and Alexander Knox were named Best Actress and Best Actor for their performances in The Bells of St. Mary and President Wilson,
In 1950 differing philosophies among members created a schism within the organization, resulting in a split into two separate groups -- The Hollywood Foreign Correspondents Association and the Foreign Press Association of Hollywood.
For a time, the two organizations existed side by side, with one group handing out Golden Globes while the other awarded Henriettas, named for their president, Henry Gris. The separation ended in 1955 when the journalists reunited under the collective title The Hollywood Foreign Press Association
with firm guidelines and requirements for membership.
During its early years the HFPA established itself with the studios by innovations such as its World Favorites awards, which it came up with by polling more than 900 newspapers, magazines and radio stations around the world. Among those honored were Tony Curtis, Marilyn Monroe and Leslie Caron. The group also came up with the idea of "bon voyage" interview lunches with actors and actresses who were leaving to make films in countries represented by the members.
There have been other important landmarks in the history of the Golden Globes. In 1951 the association decided to divide the best film, actor and actress nominees into two categories -- drama, and musical or comedy -- so that no genre would be slighted. In 1952, the HFPA created the Cecil B. DeMille Award to recognize outstanding contribution to the entertainment field.
The award's first recipient was DeMille himself.
In 1955 the Golden Globes began honoring achievements in television as well as in film. The first honorees in the Best Television Show category that year were Dinah Shore, Lucy & Desi, The American Comedy and Davy Crockett.
In 2007, The Golden Globes initiated the category Best Animated Feature Film
and the first year nominees were Cars, Happy Feetand Monster House.
Above we have listed only a very small portion of the achievements made by the the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Each year they continue to over achieve expectations through their charitable giving and the Golden Globes ceremonies.
In regard to fashion, the Golden Globe Awards provides celebrities with an outlet to show off their fashion sense. Or in some cases the lack of fashion sense. The award ceremony is very closely watched by the fashion community. Fashion designers, fashion journalists, as well as fashion blog writers, salivate anxiously awaiting the arrival of the fashion celebrities. When all is said and done and the dust begins to settle, we all are generally satisfied by the star studded event. The following day, the office is full of chit chatter. Did you see what she wore to the Golden Globes?
Learn more about the Golden Globe Awards at
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