5 Big Golden Globe Eligibility Changes, Including ‘The Mandalorian’ Exception

The Mandalorian

Don’t worry, Hollywood isn’t missing out on a chance to congratulate itself.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association is gearing up for the 2021 Golden Globe Awards and tweaking the rules now to reflect current trends. Among the recent developments: special allowances for films that couldn’t be released in theaters as planned, new eligibility rules for anthology TV series, and a clarification about Pedro Pascal’s Mandalorian role. Read on, awards buffs…

  1. Masked actors can be nominated in acting categories, if they’re unmasked at some point. Per the HFPA’s rules, masked actors are “not eligible in any acting category,” but according to Variety, the organization clarified on May 27 that The Mandalorian star Pedro Pascal could have been nominated last year because his character took off his helmet in the Season 1 finale.


  2. Lifetime members of the HFPA may now vote in the Golden Globes. “Lifetime members” of the HFPA are members who are “currently active for at least 40 years, or have been previously active for 30 years,” according to Variety, and at least 75 years in age. There are currently no members who are eligible for lifetime status.
  3. The limited series and TV movie categories now include anthology series. For example, the “Best Television Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television” category is now “Best Television Limited Series, Anthology Series or Motion Picture Made for Television.” For the record, the HFPA defines anthology series as “a series of separate and distinct stories based on a common subject or theme” that “consist[s] of two or more episodes with a total running time of at least 150 program minutes aired during the qualifying year” and “do not tell a complete, non-recurring story.” In short, this is really good news for Black Mirror fans.
  4. Anthology actors can compete in the lead acting categories if they’ve appeared in at least 50 percent of the series. That means, conceivably, Amanda Peet could be nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Limited Series, Anthology Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television,” since she will appear in more than half episodes of the latest season of the Dirty John anthology, but Joel McHale could not be nominated for leading the upcoming Season 2 premiere of The Twilight Zone, since he only appears in one episode. He could, however, run in the Best Supporting Actor – Television category.

    Dirty John The Betty Broderick Story Amanda Peet

    Isabella Vosmikova/USA Network

  5. Movies released through “virtual cinema” are eligible. As the HFPA previously announced, a motion picture whose scheduled and “bona fide” theatrical release was thwarted by pandemic-related movie theater closures can “instead be released first on a television format” and still be eligible for Golden Globes consideration. Distributors still have to provide HFPA members with DVD screeners or screening links for the movies.

A date for the 2021 Golden Globes has not been announced, though Deadline speculates the ceremony will be held on January 10, 2021. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, who emceed the awards show from 2013 to 2015, are returning as hosts.