Awards Season 101

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Fans at the red carpet of the 84th Academy Awards

Fans at the red carpet of the 84th Academy Awards

It’s a new year and Hollywood is once again about to embark on a major awards show crush. Every year it seems like there are more and more events to keep track of, winner polls to enter at work and shows to add to your DVR. The 2014 awards season, which is slightly altered this year to make room for the airing of the Winter Olympics, features a slew of evenings honoring the best (and sometimes worst) in film, TV and music. We’ve compiled a guide to help you navigate these award shows and determine whether you should tune in. If nothing else, this year will likely offer multiple opportunities to see Jennifer Lawrence endearingly accept an award.

People’s Choice Awards

Wednesday, January 8, 2014, CBS

What it honors: The People’s Choice Awards were founded in 1975 to give fans an opportunity to express their opinions about pop culture. It’s the only major awards show decided by the public and honors film, television and music.

Who votes: Anyone! Fans can vote online for 58 categories.

Most memorable moments: Jane Fonda and Sally Field tying for favorite motion picture actress in 1982 was pretty memorable, as was Julia Roberts’ win in 2000 when she proclaimed onstage, “I’m so glad I shaved my underarms!”

What to expect this year: The show will be hosted by “2 Broke Girls” stars Beth Behrs and Kat Dennings. “Glee” leads the television categories with eight nominations, while Katy Perry tops the music categories with five. Sandra Bullock has five nominations in the movie categories. Winners will be announced in several new categories, all determined by fans, including favorite Sci/Fi fantasy star and favorite streaming series. Expect Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy to take home the award for favorite movie duo for “The Heat.”

Golden Globe Awards

Sunday January 12, 2014, NBC

What it honors: First held in 1947, the Golden Globe Awards honor achievements in film and television, dividing the nominees into two categories: comedy/musical and drama. The awards include 25 categories, 14 in film and 11 in television.

Who votes: Members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, around 90 journalists all based in Southern California who cover the entertainment industry for outlets around the world.

Most memorable moments: Rather than sitting in a theater, the nominees sit at tables where they’re able to better socialize … and drink, making their reactions some of the best parts of the awards. Some moments are more kitschy than classy. For instance, when Christine Lahti was in the bathroom when she won for “Chicago Hope,” or when Angelina Jolie kissed her brother James Haven on the red carpet.

What to expect this year: Award show scene-stealers Tina Fey and Amy Poehler return to host. “American Hustle” and “12 Years a Slave” are tied for most nominations with seven each. The Golden Globes are seen as a precursor to the Oscars, possibly helping predict the winners, and in that case watch out for “Gravity,” too. Oscarologists consider it a front-runner for best picture. On the TV front, miniseries “Behind The Candelabra” and the recently concluded “Breaking Bad” are likely to be honored.

Critics’ Choice Movie Awards

Thursday, January 16, 2014, The CW

What it honors: The awards began fairly recently, in 1995, and honor achievements in film. The Critics’ Choice Television Awards, which began four years ago, airs in the summer to celebrate TV.

Who votes: More than 280 members of the Broadcast Film Critics Association, which includes critics from the United States and Canada.

Most memorable moments: The awards previously aired on VH1, meaning it the show has not historically been one of the most-watched ceremonies. But in 2010, one of the most talked about moments happened when Sandra Bullock (“The Blind Side”) beat Meryl Streep (“Julie & Julia”) in the best actress category, jokingly proclaimed that “bulls–t” and then promptly kissed her on the mouth.

What to expect this year: Aisha Tyler hosts. Like the Globes, “American Hustle” and “12 Years a Slave” are tied with the most nominations, this time with 13 each. “Gravity” holds 10. Anticipate a lot of wins for “American Hustle,” including a likely win by critical darling Jennifer Lawrence for best supporting actress. Some lucky actor will also score the audience-voted award for hottest star.

Screen Actors Guild Awards

Saturday, January 18, 2014, TBS and TNT

What it honors: The annual awards, now in their 20th year, honor acting work in five film categories and eight television categories. The most important award goes to an ensemble cast in both TV and film in order to highlight the collaborative art of acting.

Who votes: Only members of acting guild SAG-AFTRA may vote, so all winners are decided by their peers. The guild includes around 100,000 actors.

Most memorable moments: The SAG Awards are not generally known for standout moments, but in 2012 the cast of “Bridesmaids” livened things up with their own drinking game that involved drinking every time the name “Scorsese” was mentioned. “You’d be surprised how much that comes up in just casual conversation,” Melissa McCarthy joked. “People like to throw that thing around.”

What to expect this year: “12 Years a Slave” leads the film categories with four nods, while “Breaking Bad” leads television with four as well. Rita Moreno will be honored with the lifetime achievement award while Jennifer Lawrence, Sandra Bullock and Meryl Streep will be the evening’s top contenders. Expect “Breaking Bad” and “30 Rock” to score some awards.

Grammy Awards

Sunday January 26, 2014, CBS

What it honors: Presented by the Recording Academy, the Grammys celebrate achievement in the recording arts. The awards are now in their 56th year and have become the most coveted honor for musicians of all genres.

Who votes: Members of the Recording Academy can cast their votes in 82 categories and are meant to determine winners based on artistic and technical merit, not sales numbers.

Most memorable moments: One of the most notable is the 1984 show, when Michael Jackson earned 12 nominations and eight wins for “Thriller,” setting a record for most nominations. Other moments include Beyoncé’s 2008 onstage collaboration with Tina Turner, Eminem and Elton John’s controversial performance of the rapper’s track “Stan” in 2001 and Yoko Ono’s tribute to John Lennon as she and son Sean accepted the Grammy for best album (“Double Fantasy”) in 1981, just 15 months after Lennon’s death.

What to expect this year: LL Cool J returns as the host. Jay Z leads the pack with nine nominations for “Magna Carta Holy Grail.” Dubbed “music’s biggest night,” the Grammys are generally built around musical performances. This year everyone from Imagine Dragons to Kendrick Lamar to Pink to Blake Shelton will take the stage. Plus, it marks nominee Daft Punk’s first televised performance since 2008.

British Academy Film Awards

Sunday, February 16, 2014, BBC

What it honors: The annual British Academy of Film and Television Arts Film Awards, known as the BAFTAs honor any film that screened in British cinemas this year, regardless of the film’s origin. It is one of the only awards shows that does not take place in Hollywood.

Who votes: Members of BAFTA may vote for the awards. More than 6,500 members cast their ballots. The general public is invited to vote for the rising star award, which pits five actors against each other.

Most memorable moments: Technically this didn’t happen at the awards show itself, but last year Queen Elizabeth was handed an honorary award for her patronage of British film and TV by none other than Kenneth Branagh. BAFTA Chairman John Willis called her “the most memorable Bond girl yet.”

What to expect this year: Stephen Fry returns to host and is always amusing to watch as he lampoons the stars in attendance, so expect lots of jokes about Hollywood. Nominations will be announced on January 8, 2014.

Film Independent Spirit Awards

Saturday, March 1, 2014, IFC

What it honors: Now in its 29th year, the Film Independent Spirit Awards honor arts-driven films made on independent-level budgets in 15 categories. The show also highlights the winners of the annual Spirit Awards Filmmaker Grants.

Who votes: Members of Film Independent, a nonprofit arts organization any dues-paying person can join.

Most memorable moments: Seth Rogen’s hosting duties in 2012 remain a highlight of the awards show, especially his opening monologue, which included a memorable jab at musician Chris Brown. In 2011 Paul Rudd, Eva Mendes and Rosario Dawson got handsy onstage.

What to expect this year: Patton Oswalt hosts. Once again, “12 Years a Slave” leads with seven nominations. “Mud” will receive the Robert Altman Award, which honors the film’s cast, director and casting director. This will be the first year with a winner in the best editing category, but the most exciting aspect will likely be the bits and comedian Oswalt’s hosting skills.

Golden Raspberry Awards

Saturday, March 1, 2014

What it honors: Also known as the Razzies, these awards annually celebrate the absolute worst in film. The awards, now in their 34th year, are considered the “anti-Oscars” and feature categories like Worst Remake and Worst Picture.

Who votes: Anyone who pays $40 for a Razzie membership.

Most memorable moments: In 2010, good sport Sandra Bullock accepted two Razzies for her work in “All About Steve” the night before she won a Best Actress Oscar for “The Blind Side.”

What to expect this year: Nominations will be revealed January 15. but things do not look good for “The Lone Ranger” and “Grown-Ups 2.” Anticipate a lot of stars good-heartedly celebrating their failures, although it’s unlikely that Will Smith will admit how terrible “After Earth” was.

Academy Awards

Sunday, March 2, 2014, ABC

What it honors: Also known as the Oscars, the first Academy Awards were held in 1929 in the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel and have been televised since 1953. The awards honor achievements in film and are generally considered the most important awards in Hollywood.

Who votes: More than 600 members of the academy, all film artists and professionals, vote in 24 categories.

Most memorable moments: There have been a lot of memorable moments at the Oscars over the years, including Roberto Benigni’s eccentric best actor acceptance speech in 1999 for “Life is Beautiful.” Other moments vary in poignancy: In 1973 Marlon Brando refused his award for “The Godfather” to protect Hollywood’s portrayal of Native Americans, while a streaker ran onstage during the 1974 awards. The best? Halle Berry’s 2002 win for best actress, which made her the first African-American to win the category.

What to expect this year: Ellen DeGeneres returns as host. Nominations will be announced on January 16, so it’s too soon to know who will be honored, but the Oscars are generally less quirky than the Golden Globes and often feature a very lengthy ceremony. The best part, as usual, should be the fashion, which always ranges drastically from glamorous to cutting-edge.

Want more?

Most of the major film guilds also host their own awards, honoring achievements in each field. Although most don’t air on television, the winners often help predict who will take home the Oscar in similar categories.

Producers Guild of America Awards, Sunday, January 19, 2014

Directors Guile of America Awards, Saturday, January 25, 2014

Writers Guild of America Awards, Saturday, February 1, 2014

Art Directors Guild Awards, Saturday, February 8, 2014

ACE Eddie Awards (film editors), Saturday, February 15, 2014

Costume Designers Guild Awards, Saturday, February 22, 2014

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