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Byline: BILL THOMPSON
Make no mistake, movie studios know the promotional value of awards shows, however much of a glut there is of them these days. They all serve as infomercials for films and their stars. It's just that some are glitzier and have more impact than others.
Once a laughingstock, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association's annual Golden Globes telecast made the switch from cable to NBC in 1996 and has worked hard to upgrade its image. In some quarters at least, the more populist Globes are trumpeted as the best Oscar bellwether, better than the Directors' Guild or Screen Actors Guild trophies, better than the New York Film Critics Circle or the National Board of Review or the so-called Critics Choice Awards (from the Broadcast Film Critics Association).
Beyond that, the Globes can do much to assist with international marketing at a time when foreign box office is vital to …