Sunday night is right for Globes

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The Golden Globes, which have taken place on Monday for the past two years, are moving back to Sunday night.

The 65th annual Golden Globe Awards will be broadcast on Sunday, Jan. 13, by NBC at 8 p.m. EST, the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. said Monday.

The Globes moved to Monday in 2006 to avoid a second head-to-head ratings confrontation with ABC's then red-hot Sunday night lineup, anchored by "Desperate Housewives," which had cut into the Globes' ratings in 2005.

Monday worked equally well for the HFPA since it marked the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, and as a federal and state holiday, it eliminated much of the traffic at the intersection of Wilshire and Santa Monica boulevards, allowing the authorities to set up traffic patterns to accommodate the show at the Beverly Hilton.

But in 2008, the King observance will take place a week later than usual on Monday, Jan. 21. Since the HFPA did not want to hold its ceremony that late, it opted to move to Jan. 13 and not Jan. 14, since the latter is a regular workday, and the weekday traffic along the Wilshire corridor would collide with that generated by the event.

Although the networks have not yet announced their schedules for next season, ABC's Sunday night lineup, which still boasts "Housewives," has been showing some weakness, while NBC's Monday night lineup, which includes "Heroes," has picked up strength.

"I really believe we can hold out against whatever lineup is on Fox and certainly on ABC and CBS," HFPA president Philip Berk said of the return to Sunday. " 'Desperate Housewives' doesn't have the same impact it had. It does seem that Sunday night is not insurmountable."

By picking Jan. 13 instead of the King holiday on Jan. 21, the HFPA avoided one other conflict. This year, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will announce its Oscar nominations on Tuesday, Jan. 22 at 5:30 a.m. PST. If the Globes were held the night before, with parties going into the wee hours, the town would have probably witnessed a mass publicists meltdown with the Globes segueing into the Oscar noms.

Other key dates for the 65th Golden Globes include Dec. 10, the deadline for nominations ballots; Dec. 13, the noms announcements.
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