January 8, 2020 at 1:30 pm PST | by Susan Hornik
Golden Globes kick off Hollywood’s awards season

The week before the Golden Globes is always one of the busiest times of the year in Hollywood, with numerous celebrities attending ritzy industry parties and swag gift lounges. The Los Angeles Blade’s Susan Hornik takes readers behind the scenes, talking with LGBTQ nominees and award presenters.

Behind the Scenes With Golden Globe Winners

Elton John was over the moon with his Best Song win. “You know, this is really sweet, because this is not just about a song we wrote for a movie. This is a song we wrote for a movie which deals with our relationship, and it’s a relationship that doesn’t happen very much in this town. It’s a 52yearold marriage.”

Backstage in the press room, a visibly moved Ellen DeGeneres was humbled to receive the prestigious Carol Burnett Achievement award. Although she has received numerous accolades, this one was special to her.

“That’s crazy that I have gone in and out of television; the fact that I would get something even connected to a name that I grew up admiring is obviously very important to me. I think it means a lot to other people…it sends a message… my life has been a crazy journey. I never could have imagined that I would have won any awards. I think it sends a really powerful message to anyone out there trying to start a career and saying ‘I’m different.’ You can accomplish a whole lot.

DeGeneres was thrilled that Kate McKinnon presented the award to her, telling reporters that the lesbian comedian inspired her.

“I look up to not just people that are older than me, but people that are starting out now and paving the way. I think Kate McKinnon is brilliant, and I think she’s strong, and I think she’s brave. So I look up to her. I look up to so many people.”

The veteran talk show host was reflective about her life. “I think I am really happy for every single thing that happened in my life…for the people that didn’t support me. I’m happy for the times that were the hardest times of my life, because I feel like that’s what makes one you. If everything is easy, you don’t really have anything to compare it to. So I’m really grateful for all of the hard times, all of the things that didn’t work out the way I wanted them to work out, and I feel bad for people that have everything working all the time, because that’s just not life.”

She added: “Life doesn’t work that way. So I’m just grateful for my journey and, of course, my husband Mark!” she quipped, referring to her joke onstage.

Around Town 

During the 7th annual Gold Meets Golden awards brunch on Saturday, veteran athletes from across the world mingled with numerous LGBTQ celebrities to raise money to benefit Angel City Sports, a Los Angeles organization that helps support youths and adults with physical disabilities.

“LGBTQ athletes have doubled in numbers with each Olympics since Beijing 2008, and Gold Meets Golden has featured many since year one,” said Charley Cullen Walters, who co-founded and produced the event with fellow Olympics buff and Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. member Scott Orlin.

(Photo by Susan Hornk)

This year we were proud to welcome Australian swimmer Ian Thorpe, diver Greg Louganis, Dallas Cowboys’ Jeff Rohrer, figure skater Randy Gardner and rugby player Phaidra Knight. Also present were Hollywood community members Matt Bomer, Beanie Feldstein, Ben Platt and Ryan Murphy.”

Matt Bomer. (Photo by Susan Hornik)

Walters was honored that Nancy Hogshead-Makar, a straight ally who won three Olympic golds and has advocated for keeping athletes safe from sexual assault and empowering athletes in their own lives, made the trip from Jacksonville to attend.

Enthused Walters: “Joining Matt Bomer on stage to sing a happy 60th birthday to my childhood Olympic idol Greg Louganis was a personal highlight of the event for me this year.”

Photo by Susan Hornik

Lucky attendees of Gold Meets Golden 2020 left with a jam-packed Gold-Medal Gift Bag from the Mr. Morris Foundation valued at over $10,000. Items included a Sanchaya Indonesian Resort Plush Robe and five-night resort stay, Coca-Cola Commemorative Tokyo 2020 smartphone wallet, BMW Beverly Hills mini Golf Kit,  Herradura Tequila Ultra Anejo Bottle with Commemorative Gold Meets Golden Medal, Ghost Democracy Full Clean Skincare Kit, TONAL Fitness $500 coupon and Blender bottle, J’Adore Les Fleurs Everlasting Golden Flower Arrangement, UNIQLO Golden ultra-lightweight down jacket, CBDfx Hydrating CBD Mask and Muscle Balm, Rosetta Stone 24-month access card for learning a new language.

Rex Chou, founder of the luxury skincare line, Ghost Democracy, was thrilled to showcase his products at the event.

“It’s an honor to be a part of such an inspiring day. Ghost Democracy is all about exceptionally clean, high-performance skincare and was a natural fit for an event. I loved seeing the high-performing athletes and award-winning performers come together,” Choi said.

“To see iconic Olympic legends such as Greg Louganis and Ian Thorpe representing the LGBTQ community was the highlight of my day!”

Also in the gift bag: Paul Mitchell Sugar Cream, Sugar Day Cleanse and Sugar Spray Collection, Wheaties Commemorative USA Women’s Soccer Champions Box, UR+H CBD Fire and Ice roll-on and Peppermint lotion, Golden Door Full luxury body skincare kit + Gift Card to a 5 night stay at their resort spa, Cann Deux Full Spectrum CBD serum Le Grand Courtage Brut Rose Wine bottle, beatsbydre Golden Edition Headphones, The Giving Keys Rose Gold Mini Key Pendant Necklace and Official Limited Merchandise for the upcoming Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Getting Groomed

Toska Husted, who owns Toska European Spa spent this past weekend in Los Angeles working her magic on clients for the awards event. Her first client of the new decade was the red-carpet assassin himself, Billy Porter. His first step to shutting down Sunday’s red carpet was treating himself to her signature facial, the Toska Triple Lift.

Porter wanted radiant skin that was lifted and using only products from Biologique Recherche. Toska gave the “Pose” star the bright skin he desired, which included Billy’s favorites, Lotion P50V, Serum Dermopore,  and Creme Dermo RL. Porter listened to 70’s funk and post facial, said that he “loved how bright his skin looked.”

Gift Lounge 

As usual, GBK had an incredible pre-Globes gifting suite. Some of the celebrities that stopped by included the stars of nominated films such as Bruce Dern, Michael Madsen and Mike Moh (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood), Ashley Greene (Bombshell), M. Emmett Walsh & K Callan (Knives Out), Trace Lysette (Hustlers), Tzi Ma (The Farewell), and Katherine Narducci (The Irishman) among others.

The celebrities and select media, who attended GBK’s Luxury Lounge were treated to this season’s hottest items such as beauty and health care by The Super Dentist, Dermafirm USA, Glenn Ivy Hot Springs, AKA Cosmetic, New England Hemp Farm, Harmony Proteins; Trips by Sailrock Resorts and S Hotel Montego Bay Jamaica presented by Swanky Resorts; clothing & jewelry by Trico Field & ZuZu Kim; cool tech and gadgets by Silent Mode, Nature Bright Company, Go Easel, iiRcade, Genius and other gifts by Hestan Vineyards, La Boulisterie, Miyoko’s Creamery, Basic Vodka, Yowie Surprise Inside Chocolates, Secret Knock, West Coast Firepits, Gelato Festival and more. This year’s on-site charity was Educating Young Minds.

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