Tuesday's Golden Globes party invitations — excuse me, nominations — were as surprising as a Hollywood Foreign Press Association member crowding a movie junket buffet.
Or perhaps you didn't think Burlesque would be nominated for best musical/comedy to entice Cher and Christina Aguilera to the shindig. You must have seen the nods to Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie for a drag like The Tourist coming. Maybe Jake Gyllenhaal will bring his 21-year-old squeeze Taylor Swift to the most champagne-soused party of awards season.
The HFPA consists of a few dozen film reporters mostly writing for overseas publications you'll never read. Over 68 years of fluff pieces and occasional voting scandals, the Golden Globes always seem preoccupied with rubbing celebrity elbows and picking up the tab.
The Golden Globes will never be accused of accurately measuring the pulse of cinematic achievement, but they do slap electro-paddles on awards season. It is likely that many of this year's nominees will also make Academy Awards short lists.
But consider this: The Oscars will nominate 10 best picture finalists, same as the Globes cumulatively. Only an overcaffeinated publicist would believe Burlesque, The Tourist and RED have a snowball's chance on Hollywood Boulevard to pull off the double play.
Expect the academy to fill those slots with movies better suited to academy standards, such as Winter's Bone, True Grit and 127 Hours.
Meanwhile, 10 nominations in the Globes' lead acting categories don't add much suspense to the Oscar race. In the lead dramatic actor category, the Globes likely pegged Oscar's five finalists.
With only five Globe nominees in both supporting races, those chosen are immediate frontrunners for Oscar gold.
Meanwhile, several early Academy Award contenders saw their chances decrease when overlooked by Globes voters. True Grit was shut out. Director Danny Boyle (127 Hours) also was a notable omission.
Perhaps only Hollywood's screenwriters come away from Tuesday's announcements with Oscar chances unchanged. The Globes nominate only five screenplays per year, regardless of whether they are original or adapted. The academy uses separate categories, so half of their 10 slots are still up for grabs.
That sounds like a reason to party.
Steve Persall can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (727) 893-8365. Read his blog, Reeling in the Years, at tampabay.com/blogs/movies.