The 2023 Golden Globes nominees announcement is still weeks away, but there is a signal already by one of the Best Actor front-runners that he has intentions to boycott the ceremony. Brendan Fraser told GQ for its cover story that he will not attend the Golden Globes ceremony in January if he is nominated, as he is widely expected to be. Fraser is receiving career-best reviews for his dramatic turn in Darren Aronofsky’s The Whale, which will come out in theaters on December 9.
Here is what Fraser said: “I have more history with the Hollywood Foreign Press Association than I have respect for the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.” “No, I will not participate,” said Fraser. He then went on to explain by saying: “It’s because of the history that I have with them. And my mother didn’t raise a hypocrite. You can call me a lot of things, but not that.”
Fraser made headlines in 2018 for another GQ profile in which he opened up for the first time about his ups and downs in Hollywood. He was talking about the toll years of stunt work had taken on his body, while also sharing a disturbing allegation, accusing Philip Berk, a former president and member of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the organization behind the Golden Globes, of groping and assaulting him in 2003. These allegations were denied by Berk, said a report by EW.
The HFPA issued a statement after the article came out, where it said that “the HFPA stands firmly against sexual harassment and the type of behavior described in this article.”
In the latest profile, Fraser said that after promising to investigate, the HFPA ultimately came back to him with a proposed joint statement that would read, per the actor: “Although it was concluded that Mr. Berk inappropriately touched Mr. Fraser, the evidence supports that it was intended to be taken as a joke and not as a sexual advance.”
But the statement was not cosigned by Fraser as he refused to do that, and until 2021, Berk remained a voting member of the HFPA, when he was expelled for sharing an article in an email to his fellow members, where he described Black Lives Matter as a “racist hate movement.”
“I knew they would close ranks. I knew they would kick the can down the road. I knew they would get ahead of the story. I knew that I certainly had no future with that system as it was,” said Fraser.
When he was asked about why his allegations failed to provoke more of a response from the HFPA and Hollywood at large, Fraser said that he thinks that it was because it was too prickly or sharp-edged or icky for people to want to go first and invest emotionally in the situation.
The incident made Fraser retreat at the time, as he says, feeling like “something had been taken away from me.”
And not so long after the original profile came out, the actor “heard from college friends, people I hadn’t worked with or seen going back 30 years of my career.”
The article was trending on Twitter and Fraser was thinking: “Oh, my God. Oh, f***, what have I done now?” It was people saying they like me. And they referenced that piece. I was like, Is this good, is this problematic? I don’t know. What did I do to earn this?”
“I think the feeling that I have is, this is a hard one to describe, and not to be vulgar, but it’s like: I’ve seen you naked. It’s like people know what you look like, they know the story about you,” explained Fraser.
Even a few years after the article came out, he acknowledged that the alleged incident still remains difficult to discuss.
“I would admit to feeling a little bit of a heart palpitation discussing this with you right now. But it’s okay because my hope is that I can be recognized at this time in my life and career for my professional efforts, rather than the trope of the comeback kid as being a standard in culture, sports, coming from behind, being written off and then coming back,” said Fraser to the reporter.