Hollywood has a diversity problem, and Sunday’s Golden Globes highlighted that in one very weird way. It seemed like no one could tell the the difference between two films with predominantly black casts that were both up for awards this year, Hidden Figures and Fences. So people sort of just began smooshing them together. It started with reporter Jenna Bush Hager asking Pharrell about his nomination for “Hidden Fences.”
Pharrell was polite about it, but his expression of momentary surprise was well documented on Twitter, and Bush Hager got her butt dragged on Twitter all night:
She apologized on The Today Show on Monday morning, saying, “When I was interviewing the incomparable Pharrell, who I adore, I accidentally — in the electricity of the red carpet, which I've never done one before — called Hidden Figures 'Hidden Fences.' I have seen both movies, thought they were both brilliant. I've interviewed casts for both of the movies and if I offended people. I am deeply sorry.”
She continued, getting a bit weepy, “It was a mistake, because ya'll know I'm not perfect. I am authentic, but a human. And what I didn't want to do is make anyone lesser than who they are. I apologize to both the cast, to Pharrell but it was a mistake and I hope we can move on."
If only we could. That same night, someone else made the exact same word salad. While presenting the award for best supporting actress in a film, Michael Keaton also said “Hidden Fences.” Keaton, however, made a much more casual apology, saying to TMZ, “I’m sorry I apologize, I screwed it up,” then adding sarcastically, “I’m a horrible person. I’m a horrible person. But I’m gonna sleep pretty well.”
Apologies are intentions, and it’s clear which of these two is intending to really practice their move titles before the next red carpet.