The sun is out for Sunday’s Golden Globes but so is the bomb squad and more security than ever before.
In the wake of last month’s gunman attack at a Christmas market in Strasbourg, France and the New Year’s Eve knifing rampage that left three injured in Manchester, UK, Hollywood is on high alert as the 76th Hollywood Foreign Press Association shindig gets underway this evening at the Beverly Hilton.
“The recent attacks in Europe only reinforce that nothing can be left to chance tactically and strategically,” a highly placed local law enforcement official informed Deadline. “Our plan is to have eyes everywhere and shut down any possible disturbance that could arise long before it gets anywhere near the venue or the event,” he added of the road closures, armed officers, sniffing dogs and other barriers on the red carpet and around the perimeter of the Beverly Hilton on Sunday.
Nominees, attendees and media showing up this afternoon will have to go through a labyrinth of security checkpoints to get to the ballroom, as well as many of the parties later tonight. In addition, the Beverly Hills police, who are the lead department on Globes security, and supporting regional and federal law enforcement are out in force on the roads and with bomb squad trucks and other heavy reinforcements.
Officially, as has become the norm in the increasing security conscious Tinseltown and events like the Globes, Emmys, Oscars and Grammys, the BHPD aren’t revealing any security details, except to say like over the past 40 years, they got this.
“As you might imagine, we are prohibited from discussing the specific security plans we have in place,” said the department spokesperson Keith Sterling in a statement to Deadline. “But this is an extensive, collaborative effort, with federal and local agencies assisting the Beverly Hills Police Department. We will be fully and adequately staffed for Sunday’s Golden Globes using the nation’s best practices for securing large-scale events.”
In that vein, should the skies remain clear and winds low, don’t be surprised to see the BHPD and supporting local and federal agencies launching drones to protect high profile nominees and other attendees, a security measure that NYPD couldn’t execute due to the rains on New Year’s Day in Times Square. “Most stadiums are still not protected for surveillance purposes with drones, and they’re cheaper than helicopters,” says World Protection Group Inc. CEO Kent Moyer whose firm covers security detail at Globes parties and privately with celebrities.
As such, it’s quite common following these shooter attacks for local law enforcement to increase the number of snipers around the Hilton in an effort to protect attendees from any armed copycats of the tragedy in France.
Following the horror in Strasbourg in late December which took two lives and a dozen wounded, the BHPD and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s department will likely extend their road barrier. That type of distance “stops attacks and buys time so that law enforcement can deliver a response and minimize casualties,” adds Moyer.
As in past years of late, the cops have shut down Westbound Santa Monica Boulevard from Wilshire Boulevard to Century Park East. The road will remain blocked until 4 AM Monday. Eastbound Santa Monica Boulevard will be closed until 4 AM tomorrow too. Officers are also shuttering westbound Wilshire at South Santa Monica Boulevard until the same time.
Wilshire will also be completely closed to all other through traffic between the country club and South Santa Monica Boulevard. Other local streets will be closed to all but local residents until 1 AM Monday. Those roads include: Whittier Drive from Wilshire to Sunset Boulevard; Trenton Drive from Wilshire to Whittier Drive; Carmelita/Elvado/Lomitas Avenue at Walden Drive; and Greenway from Sunset to Whittier Drive.
This year’s increased Golden Globes’ security builds on the heightened police presence of last year, which was the most intense for the ceremony up to this year.