The Story Behind Why Brendan Fraser Won’t Attend The Golden Globes Ceremony, Despite Nomination

Brendan Fraser in 'The Whale.'
(Image credit: A24)

Actor Brendan Fraser is definitely having a bit of a comeback moment, which fans have affectionately named the Brenaissance. This is partly thanks to his acclaimed performance in Darren Aronofsky’s The Whale, which has resulted in various honors and tributes in the film festival circuit. He’s a favorite for Awards Season, which recently kicked off when he scored a Golden Globe nomination for his performance. But there’s a story behind why Fraser won’t attend the Globes, despite this honor.

The Golden Globe nominations were recently announced, revealing which movies are being honored by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Brendan Fraser scored a nom for The Whale (see the movie’s critical response here), but he recently confirmed to GQ that he won’t be attending the ceremony. He was quoted addressing this possibility by saying:

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. It’s because of the history that I have with them. And my mother didn’t raise a hypocrite. You can call me a lot of things, but not that.

Well, there you have it. While Brendan Fraser is expected to be nominated and present for the majority of this Awards Season’s major ceremonies, it seems like the 2023 Golden Globes won’t be one of them. And this comes just shortly after he scored a nomination for Best Performance By an Actor in A Motion Picture - Drama. 

Brendan Fraser’s comments to GQ stand in stark contrast to how actors typically react to Golden Globe nominations. But those who have been following the 54 year-old actor might not be surprised, as he’s had some major issues with the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Specifically, he had previously alleged that a former member groped him years ago. Let’s break it all down.

Brendan Fraser’s History With The Hollywood Foreign Press

Given Brendan Fraser’s comments, it’s clear that he’s still harboring some very strong feelings related to the Hollywood Foreign Press. This all dates to an alleged incident from 2003, with the actor opening up to GQ about the situation in a 2018 interview. He maintains that former HFPA president Philip Berk groped him, and that the organization swept the controversy under the rug at the time. In the 2018 story he calls the incident traumatic, and revealed the details of the alleged incident, saying:

His left hand reaches around, grabs my ass cheek, and one of his fingers touches me in the taint. And he starts moving it around.

At the time of that story Berk denied these allegations, claiming it was a joke. And while the HFPA issued a statement standing against sexual harassment, their investigation didn’t result in his firing. Instead he would be dismissed in 2021, over controversial statements he made about the Black Lives Matter movement. But despite this change, it’s clear that Brendan Fraser still has some very strong feelings about the Hollywood Foreign Press. So much so that he won’t be attending the Golden Globes, despite being honored for his performance in The Whale. We’ll just have to see if he ends up winning for his category, and how the ceremony will approach that. Only time will tell.

The Whale is in theaters now. Be sure to check out the 2023 movie release dates to plan your trips to the theater in the New Year. The Brenaissance will continue, as he’s got exciting roles in projects like Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.