Brendan Fraser Blasts the Golden Globes, “Will Not Participate” for ‘The Whale’

With the anticipated release of The Whale, star Brendan Fraser has been the name on everybody’s lips, and for good reason: we are living in the Brenaissance.

The actor, who has continued to demonstrate why he has such a faithful fanbase, recently shared that he will stick to his guns when it comes to the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA). Fraser is refusing to participate in this year’s Golden Globe Awards despite the release of his buzzy forthcoming film.

His absence will be a big kicker for the HFPA, an organization that has faced numerous controversies, including sexual assault allegations by Fraser in 2018, and criticism for their lack of Black representation.

Fraser claimed in 2018 that then-HFPA president Philip Berk groped him in 2003 at a luncheon. He recalled, “His [Berk’s] left hand reaches around, grabs my ass cheek, and one of his fingers touches me in the taint. And he starts moving it around.”

The actor said that the situation left him “ill”. While Berk denied the claims, he was later expelled from the association in 2021 for sending a racist email.

The HFPA’s negative press has led to boycotts from Amazon Studios, Netflix and Warner Bros., and NBC even refused to broadcast last years’s awards ceremony (a short-lived protest, since the Golden Globes are back on the network this year.)

Fraser’s new film, directed by Darren Aronofsky and distributed by A24, has already been met with positive reception, making The Mummy actor a shoo-in for award nominations. However, in a recent cover story with GQ, he said that he “will not participate” if invited to the Golden Globes.

“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,” Fraser said. “And my mother didn’t raise a hypocrite. You can call me a lot of things, but not that.”

When asked if he had faith in the reforms announced by the association in July, the actor replied, “at the moment, no.”

The HFPA is introducing “five pillars of change: accountability, membership, inclusion, good governance/ethics, and transparency”, as well as identifying as a for-profit organization, in place of their previous status as a tax-exempt non-profit organization.

While he’ll be a Golden Globes no-show, Fraser is still championing The Whale for awards recognition. He told GQ, “I owe it to myself. I owe it to the filmmakers. I know I owe it to those fans who paid to come and see me and stand in line in the sun and, you know, all of that. I owe it to my kids. This is my shot.”

The Whale releases Dec. 9, 2022 in theaters.

If you or someone you know needs to reach out about sexual abuse or assault, RAINN is available 24/7 at 800-656-HOPE (4673), or online at RAINN.org. 

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