Emmy wins for Damian Lewis, Claire Danes and Dame Maggie Smith

 

One of the country's most famous actresses and one of its newer stars brought home gongs as part of a large British pack who were nominated for Emmy Awards today.

At a glitzy ceremony in Los Angeles, Dame Maggie Smith picked up an award for her portrayal of the grand Dowager Countess of Grantham in country house series Downton Abbey, while Damian Lewis hailed a "golden age" of television as he scooped an award for his portrayal of an American in espionage thriller Homeland, which counts Barack Obama as a fan.

Dame Maggie saw off competition from her co-star Joanne Froggatt, who plays domestic servant Anna, to win the prize for Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Drama Series.

The veteran star also saw off challenges from Mad Men star Christina Hendricks and The Good Wife actress Christine Baranski.

Lewis won Outstanding Actor In A Drama Series for his role as US soldier Nicholas Brody, who is saved from a hostage situation in the Middle East, but sparks the suspicions of the FBI who think he may have been "turned" and could present a terrorist threat on home soil.

His award kicked off a golden night for the series, which beat Downton Abbey, Mad Men and others to win best Drama Series.

Lewis's co-star Claire Danes won the award for Outstanding Actress In A Drama Series for her portrayal of mentally disturbed FBI agent Carrie Mathison, beating competition from Downton Abbey's Michelle Dockery among others.

Lewis, who saw off challenges from fellow Brit Hugh Bonneville, who stars as the Earl of Grantham in Downton Abbey, Hollywood veteran Steve Buscemi and Jon Hamm, who plays Don Draper in Mad Men, among others, said: "I'm one of those pesky Brits, I apologise.

"I don't really believe in judging art, but I thought I'd show up just in case.

"What an extraordinary honour to be in a category with these golden actors setting a gold standard in acting in a golden age of TV.

"The cast that I work with who are delightful and enjoyable to dine with but especially to the two ladies who've suffered me the most, Claire Danes and Marina Baccarin. You're both beautiful and it's enjoyable working with you, every minute of it.

"The biggest thank you of all to the leading lady of my life Helen McCrory, I adore you darling, thank you for being here.

"My two children at home thought daddy had been nominated for an Emma.

"Well, Manon and Gulliver, Daddy just won an Emma."

Accepting Homeland's award for best drama, executive producer Alex Gansa praised its "irresistible" lead actor.

He said: "There are so many people to thank, but I've got to start with the people around me right now. The most talented group I have ever worked with, will ever work with, I'm so incredibly lucky. Our brilliant, brilliant cast, led by the incomparable Claire Danes and the irresistible Damian Lewis."

Armando Iannucci's new US show, Veep, missed out on the award for Outstanding Comedy Series but its star Julia Louis-Dreyfus did take home the gong for Outstanding Lead Actress In A Comedy Series.

But there was disappointment for a host of other Brits up for awards.

Downton Abbey actors Brendan Coyle, who plays valet John Bates, and Jim Carter, who plays the butler Carson, both missed out on Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series.

BBC's Sherlock stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman also were surpassed on Outstanding Lead Actor and Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Mini-series Or A Movie respectively.

Screen veteran Emma Thompson, who was nominated for her performance in The Song of Lunch was beaten to the award for Outstanding Lead Actress In A Mini-series Or A Movie by Hollywood actress Julianne Moore, who won the prize for her portrayal of Sarah Palin in Game Change.

PA

Emmy Awards: List of winners

Supporting Actor, Comedy Series: Eric Stonestreet, Modern Family, ABC.

Writing, Comedy Series: Louis C.K, Louie, FX Networks.

Supporting Actress, Comedy Series: Julie Bowen, Modern Family, ABC.

Directing, Comedy Series: Steven Levitan, Modern Family, ABC.

Actor, Comedy Series: Jon Cryer, Two and a Half Men, CBS.

Actress, Comedy Series: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep, HBO.

Reality-Competition Programme: The Amazing Race, CBS.

Host, Reality-Competition Programme: Tom Bergeron, Dancing With the Stars, ABC.

Supporting Actor, Drama Series: Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad, AMC.

Writing, Drama Series: Alex Gansa, Howard Gordon, Gideon Raff, Homeland, Showtime.

Supporting Actress, Drama Series: Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey, PBS.

Directing, Drama Series: Tim Van Patten, Boardwalk Empire, HBO.

Actor, Drama Series: Damian Lewis, Homeland, Showtime.

Actress, Drama Series: Claire Danes, Homeland, Showtime.

Writing for a Variety Special: Louis C.K., Louis C.K. Live at the Beacon Theatre, FX Networks.

Directing for a Variety Special: Glenn Weiss, 65th Annual Tony Awards, CBS.

Variety, Music or Comedy Series: The Daily Show With Jon Stewart, Comedy Central.

Supporting Actress, Mini-series or Movie: Jessica Lange, American Horror Story, FX Networks.

Supporting Actor, Mini-series or Movie: Tom Berenger, Hatfields & McCoys, History.

Writing, Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special: Danny Strong, Game Change, HBO.

Actress, Miniseries or Movie: Julianne Moore, Game Change, HBO.

Directing, Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special: Jay Roach, Game Change, HBO.

Actor, Miniseries or Movie: Kevin Costner, Hatfields & McCoys, History.

Miniseries or Made-for-TV Movie: Game Change, HBO.

Drama Series: Homeland, Showtime.

AP

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