The Spy’s Sacha Baron Cohen, Maisel, Kominsky snag Golden Globe nominations

Beanie Feldstein, Jonah Hill’s sister, received her first Best Actress in a Motion Picture — Comedy or Musical nomination, for Booksmart.

The Spy, Netflix (photo credit: AXEL DECIS)
The Spy, Netflix
(photo credit: AXEL DECIS)
The Spy, the story of Israeli intelligence asset, Eli Cohen, received a Golden Globe nomination for Sacha Baron Cohen, its lead actor, in the Limited Series or Made for Television Film category. Baron Cohen, a comedian whose grandparents lived in Israel, played it straight in this role and earned his third Golden Globe nod. The Spy was created by Gideon Raff, who previously made the hit Israeli and American series Homeland and Prisoners of War.
The nominations for the Golden Globes, the prizes of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), were announced in Los Angeles on Monday morning.
In the Best Foreign Language Film category, the Golden Globes went with The Farewell, a Chinese-American film; two films from France, Les Misérables and Portrait of a Lady on Fire (a French-Italian film); Pain and Glory from Spain; and Parasite from Korea.
Israel’s Ophir Award winner, Incitement by Yaron Zilberman, a film about Yigal Amir, did not receive a nomination. The last time Israel had a Golden Globe nominee in this category was Ronit Elkabetz and Shlomi Elkabetz’s Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem in 2015. The last time an Israeli film won a Globe was Ari Folman’s Waltz with Bashir in 2009.
Tim Allen, Susan Kelechi Watson and Dakota Fanning read the announcements at the press conference. The Golden Globes are seen as a precursor to the Oscars, although the HFPA is a much smaller organization, with only 90 members. The Globes give awards for both television and movies, but because they are announced and awarded shortly before the Oscars – this year, the Golden Globes ceremony will be held on January 5 – people trying to predict Oscar winners and nominees watch them closely.
Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood, the latest film by Quentin Tarantino – father of Israeli singer Daniella Pick’s soon-to-be-born baby – got five nominations: Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Actor – Musical or Comedy (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture (Brad Pitt).
Jojo Rabbit, a surreal comedy about a German boy during the Nazi era whose imaginary friend is Hitler, directed by Taika Waititi (aka Taika Cohen because he is of mixed Maori/Jewish descent) was also nominated in the Best Motion Picture — Musical or Comedy category, and picked up a nomination for Roman Griffin Davis, its young star.
Beanie Feldstein, Jonah Hill’s sister, received her first Best Actress in a Motion Picture — Comedy or Musical nomination, for Booksmart.
Two Jewish themed television comedies, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and The Kominsky Method, received multiple nominations. Both were nominated in the Best Television Series – Comedy category, which The Kominsky Method won last year. Also nominated again in the Best Actor in a Television Show – Comedy/Musical was last year’s winner, The Kominsky Method’s star, Michael Douglas. Two of the other nominees in this category this year are Jewish, Ben Platt of The Politician and Paul Rudd of Living with Yourself. Ramy Youssef, an American stand-up comic born to Egyptian parents, got a nod in this category for Ramy, his loosely autobiographical Hulu series about a Muslim millennial.
Alan Arkin, Douglas’ co-star in Kominsky, received a second Golden Globe nomination for his supporting role on the show.
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel was nominated in the Best Television Series – Comedy or Musical category, and Rachel Brosnahan, who won last year, was nominated again for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy. Natasha Lyonne, who is from an Orthodox Jewish family, was also nominated in this category for Russian Doll.
The big story in terms of the entertainment industry is the continuing strength of streaming services as opposed to traditional film studios, network television and premium cable. Netflix led the nominations with 34 altogether in both movies and television. Netflix was strong in film categories with Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman and Noah Baumbach’s Marriage Story, both of which opened in theaters but are now also streaming. The Kominsky Method is from Netflix, as are such other multiple nominees as Unbelievable (whose writers included Jewish literary power couple Ayelet Waldman and Michael Chabon) and The Crown.