Daniel Kaluuya in "Get Out" (Universal Pictures)

"Get Out" will compete as a comedy at Golden Globes and people have feelings

"Get Out" was a lot of things, but a comedy?


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Rachel Leah
November 15, 2017 5:10PM (UTC)

News came down Tuesday that Jordan Peele's brilliant breakout film "Get Out" will compete in the Golden Globes' comedy/musical categories.

For many, it was a surprising placement for the satirical horror film that crushed it at the box office in February and creatively, thoughtfully dealt with interracial dating, white privilege and the pervasive racism in self-proclaimed liberal circles. It's a great film — but calling it a "comedy" seems a profound, uneasy stretch.

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Nonetheless, Universal Pictures, the film's distributor, submitted it as a comedy with Peele's reported blessing. It appears that the Hollywood Foreign Press, the governing body behind the Globes, offered the option and Universal took it.

A similar path was taken in 2015 with the sci-fi drama "The Martian," also submitted as a comedy. As SlashFilm wrote back then, "The main reason this happens is because the competition isn’t usually as stiff, so studios sometimes use the comedy category as a way to get more accolades for their movie and cast without as much competition." Certainly in the case of "Get Out," awards are much deserved irrespective of the film's placement.

Regardless, Twitter wasn't having it. Even comedian and "Get Out" co-star Lil Rel criticized the decision.

It's a complicated and often blurry line here, one worthy of critique. Yes, the comedy/musical slot can offer less-established actors and directors more recognition, especially in the case of films omitted from Oscar contention. Yet, the inclusion of the brutal "Get Out" in it just feels like a form of category deception that may paste over some very important race issues.

Wryly, Peele himself might have had the best take here.


Rachel Leah

Rachel Leah is a culture writer for Salon. You can follow her on Twitter: @rachelkleah

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