Tommy Wiseau reveals what he would have said on stage at the Golden Globes
On a night that will be remembered mostly for its somber attire, sober attitude and that rousing speech from Oprah Winfrey, there was at least one glimmer of the classic, madcap unpredictability of the Golden Globes. That was provided, appropriately enough, by James Franco, Tommy Wiseau and the inside-out making-of tale “The Disaster Artist.”
When Franco won lead actor in a motion picture, comedy or musical for his portrayal of Wiseau, Franco grabbed his younger brother and costar Dave Franco and dragged him onstage. And then from somewhere far, far in the back of the room came Wiseau, barreling onstage at the elder Franco’s exhortation. As Wiseau reached the stage he headed straight for the microphone, but James Franco physically blocked him from it.
Franco instead read a speech from his phone, saying of Wiseau “Nineteen years ago he was stuck in traffic, from the Golden Globes, he said to his best friend Greg,” — and here Franco briefly launched into Wiseau’s distinctive, unplaceable accent — “‘Golden Globes, so what, I’m not invited. I know they don’t want me, guy with accent, long hair, so I show them. I don’t wait for Hollywood, I make my own movie.’”
Resuming in his own voice, Franco continued, “I am very happy to share this moment with him today.”
The film is directed by and stars Franco, who portrays Wiseau in the story about the making of the now notorious 2003 movie “The Room.” Wiseau wrote, directed and starred in “The Room,” putting it in theaters himself to qualify for the Academy Awards. Though not even a blip at the box office at the time, the movie has gone on to become a modern cult favorite, playing to rabid fans around the world.
Graham Broadbent, producer of "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” accepts the award for motion picture - drama at the 75th Golden Globe Awards on Sunday.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
“Lady Bird” director Greta Gerwig accepts the award for motion picture - musical or comedy at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Oprah Winfrey, recipient of the Cecil B. Demille Award, delivers a powerful speech at the 75th Golden Globe Awards on Sunday.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
The Golden Globes audience stands at attention for Oprah Winfrey, recipient of the Cecil B. Demille Award.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Natalie Portman and Ron Howard present the director nominees, or as Portman pointedly put it: “Here are the all-male nominees.”(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
“The Shape of Water” director Guillermo del Toro made sure his speech counted at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
In a “Harry Potter” reunion, Emma Watson and Robert Pattinson present an award at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
With the cast and crew from “Big Little Lies” alongside her, Reese Witherspoon accepts the Golden Globe for television limited series.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
I, Tonya actress Allison Janney wins the Golden Globe for performance by an actress in a supporting role in a motion picture.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Presenters Jessica Chastain and Chris Hemsworth.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
“Lady Bird’s” Saoirse Ronan wins the award for actress in a motion picture musical or comedy.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Presenter Salma Hayek Pinault(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Alicia Vikander and Michael Keaton(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
“Thelma & Louise” duo Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon reunite as presenters at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
“Darkest Hour’s” Gary Oldman accepts the award for actor in a motion picture - drama.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Isabelle Huppert, from left, and Angelina Jolie present at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Frances McDormand delivers a powerful speech in accepting the actress award for "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.”(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Presenter Barbra Streisand issues a call for more women directors to be nominated.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Aziz Ansari, winner of the Golden Globe for performance by an actor in a television series comedy, accepts his trophy.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Emilia Clarke and Kit Harrington present at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Amy Sherman-Palladino, creator of “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” accepts the award for television series musical or comedy.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Halle Berry(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Edgar Ramirez, Penelope Cruz, Ricky Martin and Darren Criss(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Hugh Grant(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Winner of the screenplay motion picture Golden Globe, Martin McDonagh, writer of “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” accepts his award.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Kirk Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
“Coco” director and producer Lee Unkrich accepts the award for animated film.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Presenters Sebastian Stan and Allison Janney(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
“Big Little Lies” actress Laura Dern wins for actress in a supporting role in a series, limited series or motion picture made for television at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Tommy Wiseau, left, James Franco, winner of actor in a motion picture musical or comedy for “The Disaster Artist,” and Dave Franco at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Kerry Washington and Garrett Hedlund(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Bruce Miller, producer-writer of “The Handmaids Tale” on Hulu, accepts the award for television series drama at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Christina Hendricks and Neil Patrick Harris(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Meher Tatna, HFPA president, at the 75th Golden Globe Awards(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Presenter Seth Rogen(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Roseanne Barr and John Goodman(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
“Big Little Lies” actor Alexander Skarsgard wins the award for actor in a supporting role in a series, limited series or motion picture made for television.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Mariah Carey and Common present an award at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Elisabeth Moss wins the Golden Globe for best actress in a TV drama for “The Handmaid’s Tale.”(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” indeed. Rachel Brosnahan wins best TV comedy actress.(Paul Drinkwater/NBC)
Presenters Carol Burnett and Jennifer Aniston bond at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
“The Greatest Showman’s” Zac Efron presents a Golden Globe award.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Sam Rockwell wins a Golden Globe supporting actor-motion picture award for "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.”(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Oscar and Golden Globe winners Helen Mirren and Viola Davis present an award at the Golden Globes.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Nicole Kidman wins the Golden Globe for best actress in a limited series for "Big Little Lies.”(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Dwayne Johnson and Gal Gadot present an award at the Golden Globes.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
After host Seth Meyers talks up “The Post” and its cast at the Golden Globes, he shoos away a presenter with an armful of awards.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Seth Meyers takes on the hosting duties at the 75th Golden Globe Awards on Sunday at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.(Paul Drinkwater / NBC)
Earlier in the evening, a clip package for “The Disaster Artist” was introduced by Seth Rogen, a producer and costar on the film. He recalled seeing the longstanding billboard in Los Angeles for “The Room” which featured a menacing photo of Wiseau — “He kind of looked like if a vampire went to a costume party dressed as Johnny Depp.”
Rogen noted that the billboard featured a phone number, and that “if you called the number, it was him: The writer, director, star, producer of the movie answered the phone.”
He described the film by saying, “What you were treated to was something that was so bad, yet so enjoyable it made you actually question the nature of quality itself.”
“Only my good friend James Franco is weird enough to think that showing the story of the people who made this movie would be the best way to let every outsider who has ever been rejected know that their dream can in fact come true,” Rogen continued. “Maybe not in the exact way they hoped it would, but they’re here. So that’s insane.”
Yet all night long, for a movie about teamwork and friendship, the “Disaster Artist” crew found themselves split up inside the Golden Globes ceremony itself. Dave Franco told The Times, “trust me it was a whole thing” about trying to get everyone together. Even Alison Brie, a costar in the movie, Dave Franco’s real-life wife and also a nominee for her performance on the Netflix series “GLOW,” was at another table.
Dave Franco also mentioned he had not planned to go onstage with his brother if he were to win but that James dragged him along in the moment.
Even as he wore a tuxedo given to him by Burberry, Wiseau was also sported wearing his signature layered chain belts, his long hair and sunglasses, highlighting the self-created mystique that follows him like a waft of fine cologne.
Wiseau and his friend Greg Sestero — costar in “The Room” and co-writer of the book “The Disaster Artist” that inspired Franco’s film — were at a separate table farther back in the room. Asked if he was upset that they weren’t closer, Wiseau exhibited the same spirit that animates the movie about him, “It doesn’t matter, we’re here!”
As social media erupted over the fact that Wiseau made it so close and yet was still so far from speaking at an awards show, denied the chance to speak from the stage, Rogen felt the same way, telling The Times, “I want to know what Tommy was going to say! He looked like he was going for it!”
Franco and Wiseau have exhibited an unusual and complex dynamic between themselves at times, perhaps never more so than in Wiseau’s essentially positive comments about “The Disaster Artist” with occasional complaints that he doesn’t throw a football as poorly as Franco does in the film.
On James Franco’s win for his portrayal, Wiseau told The Times, “He did such a great job, talking as a director and an actor. I think he make a big effort, which sometimes from the outside is extremely difficult to understand that. He did good with accent. His brother Dave did good as well. They really studied character. But he doesn’t know how to throw football, that’s for sure!”
And as for what he might have said if he spoke from the stage on Sunday night, even the oddball outsider Wiseau was able to read the room. His message would have been simply this, “If a lot of people loved each other, the world would be a better place to live.”
Then he added, “See ‘The Room,’ have fun, and enjoy life. The American Dream is alive, and it’s real.”
Times staff writers Jen Yamato and Amy Kaufman contributed to this report.
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