“La La Land,” a musical about two dreamers falling in love in Hollywood, beat out gritty drama and true-life stories to lead the Golden Globe nominees on Monday.
“La La Land” scored seven nominations in all, including for Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling in the lead comedy/musical acting categories, while writer-director Damien Chazelle received nods for best director and best screenplay.
“Moonlight,” the tale of an impoverished black boy in Miami struggling with his sexuality, scored six nods, including Barry Jenkins in the directing and screenplay categories and Naomie Harris and Mahershala Ali in the best supporting acting races.
The nominations underscored how “La La Land” and “Moonlight” are becoming the two front-runners in Hollywood’s annual awards race.
Both made the American Film Institute’s list of best movies of 2016. At Sunday’s Critics Choice awards, “La La Land” took home eight accolades, including best picture, while “Moonlight” picked up two.
“La La Land” is up against “20th Century Women,” the story of a free-spirited mother; raunchy superhero action movie “Deadpool”; singing comedy “Florence Foster Jenkins”; and teen tale “Sing Street” for best comedy/musical film at the Golden Globes.
“Moonlight” will face war drama “Hacksaw Ridge,” western crime story “Hell or High Water,” adoption tale “Lion” and “Manchester by the Sea,” which is about a working-class family dealing with tragedy, in the best drama film category.
More than 90 journalists in the Hollywood Foreign Press Association choose The Golden Globes. Winners will be announced on Jan. 8 at a televised ceremony hosted by Jimmy Fallon.
On the television side, “The People v. O.J. Simpson” continued its awards success with five nominations, including best limited series. Other regulars (“Veep,” ”Transparent”) were also recognized, though a number of more recent acclaimed shows not eligible for September’s Emmy Awards elbowed their way in, including “The Night Of,” ”Westworld,” ”Atlanta,” ”This Is Us” and “Insecure.”
While the voters do not overlap with members of the film guilds who pick the Academy Awards nominees and winners, the Globes help build buzz for films leading up to February’s Oscars.
After a furor that erupted earlier this year because all 20 acting Oscar nominees were white, the Golden Globes feature numerous actors of color, including Ruth Negga of “Loving,” Ali and Harris of “Moonlight,” and Dev Patel, who is of Indian descent, for “Lion.”
Notable omissions from the best drama film category included “Jackie,” an in-depth character study of the widow of U.S. president John F. Kennedy in the week after his assassination. Lead Natalie Portman, however, received a best actress nomination.
“I had such a beautiful experience making this film with the most wonderful cast and crew, and particularly with our great director, Pablo Larrain, that it feels like icing on the cake to be nominated,” Portman said in a statement.
Martin Scorsese’s “Silence,” the tale of missionaries in 17th-century Japan, and “Fences,” a tense African-American family drama set in the 1950s, were also snubbed in the best drama film category.
“Fences” did bring nods for best actor to Denzel Washington and best supporting actress for Viola Davis.
In the best comedy/musical category, “Hidden Figures,” the true-life story of three black women who help NASA in the 1960s space race, was missing from the list, but star Octavia Spencer landed a best supporting actress nomination.