Julian Assange Talks to Hollywood Foreign Press Association

In an explosion of relevancy, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, best known as the people behind the Golden Globes, the awards ceremony that for a brief moment in time was the predictor for the Academy Awards, landed a Skype interview with WikiLeaks founder and interwebs pinup boy, Julian Assange. The fifty reporters who joined on the Skype video interview will be filing the stories tomorrow and into the week, and the HFPA have dropped juicy hints about  what the platinum haired cyber-star discussed as part of the association’s rapidly expanding Round Table series of interviews.

Last month HFPA vice president Lorenzo Soria told Variety that the Association wanted a return to real journalism. Today he told Variety:

We knew that getting a story with the importance of the Wikileaks controversy would be helpful in our efforts to broaden our reach beyond just interviewing the latest movie star. We hope that interviewing Julian Assange opens the door to other major interviews….My story for (Italian daily) La Stampa runs tomorrow and I know they’re really excited. This is clearly not the kind of story you work on every day.

The Skype call was arranged between the HFPA’s offices in West Hollywood and the Ecuadorian embassy in London where Assange has been living since June 2012 when he was granted diplomatic asylum. In his interview Assange warned of the dangers posed by the American security complex. He also stated  that his family had received death threats. The interview took several months to arrange, and is timed perfectly to coincide with the release of the biopic The Fifth Estate, which Assange told the HFPA was

opportunistic and hostile.

The movie may well be, but it is also fomenting  an increased interest in WikiLeaks, Assange, and the charges against him in Sweden. And while Assange may feel contrary to the adage that any publicity is good publicity, he’s getting a lot–and by speaking up again The Fifth Estate so clearly and loudly, so is the film. People will go to see it, and hopefully they will look deeper and longer into Assange, into WikiLeaks, into Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden.

And it also remains to be seen if the HFPA will nominate The Fifth Estate for any Golden Globe categories.

Assange’s stay in the Ecuadorian Embassy began in June of last year when the British government sought, per the HFPA’s explanation:

to extradite him to Sweden under a European Arrest Warrant for questioning in relation to a sexual assault investigation. Metropolitan police officers have been stationed outside the embassy since Assange entered the building and have been ordered to arrest him if he attempts to leave…

WikiLeaks has been involved in the publication of material documenting extra-judicial killings in Kenya, a report on toxic waste dumping on the Ivory Coast, Church of Scientology manuals, Guantanamo Bay detention camp procedures, the July 12 2007 Baghdad air strike video and other documents.

At one point there were five WikiLeaks film projects in development. I’m just bummed no one is making  a musical…

Golden Globes Ceremony 2013: FDL Live Blog

It’s the Golden Globes, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s own award show (on NBC at 5pm West Coast, 8pm East, right now!) with Amy Poehler and Tina Fey doing the hosting honors! The HFPA loves, loves, loves television and movie stars, and judging from the list of Best Director nominees, likes to set itself apart from those Oscar people.   So tune in, turn on, and drop names with Firedoglake as we dish the gowns, the speeches, and discuss who we would have voted voted for and why!


Best Drama
“Django Unchained”
“Life of Pi”
“Zero Dark Thirty”

Best Musical/Comedy
“Les Miserables”
Best Director
Ben Affleck, “Argo”
Best Actress in a Drama
Jessica Chastain, “Zero Dark Thirty”
Best Actor in a Drama
Daniel Day-Lewis, “Lincoln”

Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy
Hugh Jackman, “Les Miserables”

Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy
Jennifer Lawrence, “Silver Linings Playbook”

Best Supporting Actress
Anne Hathaway, “Les Miserables”

Best Supporting Actor
Christoph Waltz, “Django Unchained”

Best Screenplay
Quentin Tarantino, “Django Unchained”

Best Foreign Language Film

Best Animated Feature

Best Original Song
“Skyfall,” music and lyrics by Adele and Paul Epworth (“Skyfall”)

Best Original Score
Mychael Danna, “Life of Pi”


Best TV Comedy or Musical

Best TV Drama

Best Actress in a TV Drama
Claire Danes, “Homeland”

Best Actor in a TV Drama
“Damian Lewis, “Homeland”

Best Actress in a TV Comedy
Lena Dunham, “Girls”
Best Actor in a TV Comedy
Don Cheadle, “House of Lies”

Best Miniseries or TV Movie
“Game Change”

Best Actress in a Miniseries or TV Movie
Julianne Moore, “Game Change”

Best Actor in a Miniseries or TV Movie
Kevin Costner, “Hatfields & McCoys”
Best Supporting Actress in a TV Show, Miniseries or TV Movie
Maggie Smith, “Downtown Abbey: Season 2″

Best Supporting Actor in a TV Show, Miniseries or TV Movie
Ed Harris, “Game Change”