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Guests at the 2017 Golden Globes received a surprise inside their award show program: An inspiring letter from the president of the United States.
The rare move marks a written farewell to Hollywood from President Barack Obama, who has enjoyed support from scores of celebrities during his eight years as U.S. leader. Sunday’s Golden Globes ceremony is the last major award show before the president leaves office on Jan. 20.
Janice Min, Chief Creative Officer of The Hollywood Reporter-Billboard Media Group, tweeted a photo of the president’s letter.
“Michelle and I sent greetings to all those attending the 74th annual Golden Globe Awards,” he wrote. “Film and television have captured our understanding of society. Using the big and small screens to bring diverse tales to life, actors and actresses and creative visionaries behind the scenes have inspired us to find deeper meaning in our shared humanity.”
“Tonight’s nominees have devoted their talents to helping us celebrate our triumphs and illustrate our flaws,” the letter said. “By enabling us to see ourselves in each other and creating a space for the many narratives that reflect our rich and collective history, they remind us of the power and ideas and the ways they can shape our world for the better. As you gather to recognize this year’s nominees, I wish you all the best for a memorable evening.”
The Obamas have previously made video cameos at the biggest award show, the Oscars. The president appeared in a 2011 clip show. In 2013, the First Lady made a video appearance at the Oscars, introducing the nominees and winner of Best Picture. Her cameo drew some controversy, mostly from conservative news outlets and personalities.
“That’s just the nature of life. I mean, we live in a time when there are bloggers and tweeters and 24-hour news and everyone has a voice in this town square, and it’s a big one,” Michelle said on the Today show. “That means at any point at a given time, somebody’s not going to like what you do. That’s the nature of things.”
The Golden Globes also took place days after he and First Lady Michelle Obama hosted and paid for their farewell party at the White House, which was attended by dozens of top stars, such as Tom Hanks, Meryl Streep, George Clooney, Olivia Wilde, Chrissy Teigen, John Legend and Kerry Washington, who attended with husband Nnamdi Asomugha and their son and daughter.
“He deserves a party, don’t you think?” she said.
Following the 2017 Golden Globes on NBC, tune back in to E! for our live After-Party special at 11 p.m. And catch our Fashion Police special Monday at 8 p.m.