Globes return early in 2009


Having been sidelined by the WGA strike this year, the Golden Globes are set to return next year on Sunday, Jan. 11.

On Tuesday, the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. announced its key dates for its 66th annual awards. Nominations will be announced at 5 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 11.

Beginning in the early '70s, the Globes traditionally were held in late January. But since the Academy Awards moved from March to late February in 2004, the Globes have been steadily inching closer toward the beginning of the year. Jan. 11 will be the earliest date yet for a Globes ceremony.

Still, the Globes presentation will not have much of an impact on the Oscar nomination process. Although the Academy's nominations polls will close Jan. 12, a day after the Globes, most Academy voters will have mailed off their choices before the HFPA announces its winners at the NBC broadcast, once again set for the Beverly Hilton.

According to the HFPA calendar, nominations ballots will be mailed to the group's membership Nov. 26. The final screening date for motion pictures is Dec. 6, putting pressure on those filmmakers who are finishing awards hopefuls late in the year. Nomination ballots must be returned by Dec. 8.

Following the Dec. 11 announcement of the nominees, final ballots will be mailed Dec. 22 and are due by Jan. 7.