'Shape of Water' leads Golden Globe nods

Fairy tale romance "The Shape of Water" led the Golden Globe nominations with seven on Monday.

Fairy tale romance “The Shape of Water” led the Golden Globe nominations with seven on Monday as Hollywood launched an awards season expected to be overshadowed by the sexual misconduct scandal engulfing the movie industry.

Guillermo del Toro’s acclaimed 1960s-set fantasy picked up nominations in several top categories, including best motion picture drama and best actress for Sally Hawkins.

“The Post” and “Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri” followed with six nods and coming-of-age film “Lady Bird” got four nominations.

The other best motion picture drama nominees are “Call Me By Your Name,” another coming-of-age tale, World War II thriller “Dunkirk,” media drama “The Post” and “Three Billboards.”

The Globes are seen as a chance for Hollywood to demonstrate its intolerance of sexual misconduct following a wave of allegations that emerged after movie mogul Harvey Weinstein was accused of decades of misbehavior that would make him the most egregious sexual predator in the history of filmmaking.

The wider fallout is likely to have a seismic effect on the awards season, as numerous other powerful figures have been accused of sexual misconduct.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association largely avoided rewarding the work of Kevin Spacey, James Toback, Jeffrey Tambor, Louis C.K., Brett Ratner, Bryan Singer, Amazon Studios boss Roy Price and numerous other scandal-hit big players.

Spacey, who won best actor in 2015 for “House of Cards,” was never in with chance of a repeat following a litany of allegations against him.

But his alleged misdeeds against young men appeared to have harmed the chances of colleagues such as Robin Wright, another previous winner, as the show was blanked this year.

“Transparent,” which has also had numerous nominations and a win for Tambor, found itself in the same boat with HFPA members giving the comedy a hard pass.

Meanwhile, the HFPA went for scandal-free old favorites like Scott, Christopher Nolan (“Dunkirk”) and Steven Spielberg (“The Post”). “The Post,” a defense of the free press widely seen as a rebuke to US President Donald Trump, is an early Oscars favorite.

Martin McDonagh’s “Three Billboards,” starring Frances McDormand as a mother seeking to avenge the rape and murder of her daughter, is also widely fancied since taking the influential audience award at the Toronto International Film Festival in September.

On the downside, “Dunkirk” -- an early Oscars favorite much loved for its masterful cinematography, if not its sparkling dialogue -- earned just three nominations.

Coming-of-age romance “Call Me By Your Name” was widely expected to be the top contender, but disappointed with just three nominations.

The Golden Globe Awards will take place in Beverly Hills on January 7, with talk show host Seth Meyers presenting.

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