The 74th annual Golden Globe Awards will be held in Los Angeles this afternoon, and the Disney animated hit film Moana is up for two awards.

It's been nominated for best animated motion picture and best original song for a motion picture.

Taika Waititi
Taika Waititi

Oscar-nominated film-maker, New Zealander Taika Waititi, is behind the script about a Polynesian princess called Moana.

The film follows Moana's quest as she sails the Pacific Ocean in search of a fabled island, with help from demigod Maui.

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Maui is voiced by Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, and 16-year-old Auli'i Cravalho voices Moana.

Waititi has been behind some of New Zealand's most successful films including 2010's Boy and 2014's vampire hit What We Do In The Shadows. He was nominated for an Academy Award for his short film Two Cars, One Night.

The song, How Far I'll Go, from Moana, is performed by Auli'i Cravalho, and another version by Canadian singer and songwriter Alessia Cara.

Speeches about Donald Trump and wins for the Los Angeles musical La La Land look like the awards' surest things.

Jimmy Fallon will emcee this year's show, to be broadcast live from Beverly Hills, California. It's the first time in nearly a decade that someone other than Ricky Gervais or the duo of Tina Fey and Amy Poehler is hosting the Globes.

But another transition is on the minds of many attendees.Though usually a boisterous, boozy affair, the coming inauguration of Donald Trump is looming over this year's Globes, which take place 12 days before the President-Elect is to be sworn in.

Throughout the usual self-congratulatory toasting of Hollywood's awards season, many stars and film-makers have evoked a foreboding sense of dread over a Trump presidency.

Fallon, the popular Tonight Show host, isn't known for his political humour, but he has promised a steady diet of Trump jokes.

Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling star in La La Land. Photo / Supplied
Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling star in La La Land. Photo / Supplied

Damien Chazelle's La La Land comes in with a leading seven nods and a likely lock on the best picture award for a musical or comedy. Its stiffest Academy Awards competition, Barry Jenkins' coming-of-age tale Moonlight and Kenneth Lonergan's family drama Manchester by the Sea, will square off in the Globes' dramatic categories, along with the heist thriller Hell or High Water, the Dev Patel-led Lion and Mel Gibson's Hacksaw Ridge.

The People v. O.J. Simpson leads the television nominees with five nominations, including nods for stars Sarah Paulson, Courtney B. Vance, Sterling K. Brown and John Travolta.

A number of recent shows are also in the mix, including Atlanta, Westworld, The Night Of, This Is Us and Insecure.

Last year's ceremony, hosted by Gervais, drew 18.5 million viewers, down about 4 per cent from the year before. Among the presenters on tap for Sunday night's show are Leonardo DiCaprio, Emma Stone, Ben and Casey Affleck, Viola Davis, Amy Schumer, Sting and Matt Damon.

Many attendees will be thinking of those absent. After a year full of notable deaths, the back-to-back passing over the holidays of Debbie Reynolds and her daughter, Carrie Fisher, was felt acutely in a Hollywood that revered both. Reynolds and Fisher were laid to rest on Friday in Los Angeles.

Meryl Streep has been nominated for her performance in Florence Foster Jenkins. Photo / Supplied
Meryl Streep has been nominated for her performance in Florence Foster Jenkins. Photo / Supplied

One other thing is assured: Meryl Streep will go home with an award. Though always a good bet for hardware, Streep is this year's recipient of the Cecil B. DeMille Award for career achievement. She's also nominated for her performance in Florence Foster Jenkins, her 30th Globe nod.