Michael Keaton has done it! He's won Best Actor in a Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical category for Birdman at the 2015 Golden Globes. The big reveal was made during the awards ceremony hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Keaton bested fellow nominees Joaquin Phoenix, Christoph Waltz, Bill Murray and Ralph Fiennes.
If you compare the real-life Keaton to his Birdman character, Riggan Thomson, he will ride you, though it's easily to make them. As an actor trying to make a comeback after becoming famous for starring in a superhero franchise, Riggan writes, directs and stars in a Broadway play. Co-starring fellow Golden Globe nominees Emma Thompson and Edward Norton, Birdman see what happens when he has to deal with his fresh-out-of-rehab daughter, the shenanigans of an eccentric actor, and the theater critic that's out to gut his opening night.
"I'm so grateful, honestly, from the bottom of my heart," said a teary eyed Keaton as he took the stage. In accepting the honor, the actor revealed his birth name -- Michael John Douglas -- and his humble beginnings. "I can't remember a time when my father wasn't working two jobs," he said. "To come from the place where I come from, I'm so proud of all my friends and family."
The top two front-runners for the Best Actor award in the Comedy or Musical category were Fiennes and Keaton. Both toted impressive performances with multiple scene-stealing moments in overall powerful films. Though Murray and Waltz were also critically praised for their respective roles, they didn’t resonate as strongly with audiences as Birdman or The Grand Budapest Hotel.
Phoenix should’ve been considered a front-runner for his hilarious performance as a hippie detective in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice. The problem was — and has always been — his big mouth. The actor has been previously nominated four other times for Golden Globes, and he won in 2005 for Walk the Line. However, in 2012, he notoriously bashed the Academy Awards.
As he told Interview, “I think it’s total, utter bulls—, and I don’t want to be a part of it. I don’t believe it.” While the Globes is a product of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Phoenix hasn’t earned a win at either awards ceremony since.
As we move away from the Golden Globes and into the Oscars, Fiennes, Keaton and Phoenix could all receive attention. Keaton's Golden Globes win proves that his work has resonated with audiences. Although they will also have the contenders in the Globes’ Drama category to compete with.
Steve Carell’s transformation in Foxcatcher was enthralling, while Benedict Cumberbatch and Eddie Redmayne are the two early front-runners of the category. David Oyelowo wowed audiences with his turn as Martin Luther King, Jr. in Selma. Competition for this category is overwhelmingly stiff, but the Academy tends to gravitate toward historic figures, dramatic transformations and films about overcoming adversity. The Imitation Game, The Theory of Everything and Selma are all prime displays of each.