Mirren wins best actress prize for The Queen

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Dame Helen Mirren's regal roles earned her two Golden Globes today as she led an impressive British assault on the Hollywood awards.

The 61-year-old won best dramatic film actress for her portrayal of Elizabeth II in The Queen and another honour for playing the monarch's 16th century predecessor in TV mini-series Elizabeth I.

Her success is seen as a boost to her Oscar chances next month, when she is widely tipped to pick up an Academy Award.

Scriptwriter Peter Morgan got the screenplay prize for The Queen, which tells the story of the royal family's reaction to the death of Diana, Princess of Wales.

But the movie missed out in the best picture category, which was won by Babel, and its director Stephen Frears was beaten by Martin Scorsese, who took the honour for The Departed.

Meanwhile Sacha Baron Cohen won the Golden Globe for actor in a comedy film for his spoof Kazakh journalist in Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan.

There were also awards for Hugh Laurie, Jeremy Irons, Bill Nighy and Emily Blunt.

But Dame Judi Dench and Kate Winslet, who were up against Dame Helen, went home empty-handed.

They had been nominated in the best actress character for Notes on a Scandal and Little Children respectively.

Dame Helen Dame Helen, wearing a dramatic royal blue gown with a plunging V-neck, paid tribute to the real Queen in her acceptance speech.

"I honestly feel this award belongs to her, because I think you fell in love with her, not with me," she told the audience in Beverley Hills.

"I just tried to make her as truthful to herself as possible.

"However, she already has an orb, that goes with her sceptre.

"So I will gratefully receive this one."

Cohen, 35, had the audience in stitches as he recounted the scene where he engages in an impromptu naked wrestling match with co-star Ken Davitian.

"This movie was a life-changing experience," he said.

"I saw some amazing, beautiful, invigorating parts of America, but I saw some dark parts of America, an ugly side of America, a side of America that rarely sees the light of day.

"I refer of course to the anus and testicles of my co-star, Ken Davitian.

"Ken, when I was in that scene and I stared down and saw your two wrinkled golden globes on my chin, I thought to myself, 'I'd better win a bloody award for this'."

He thanked his fiancee Isla Fisher and, in a reference to lawsuits he the film faces from some participants, "every American alive who has not sued me so far".

Picking up his award, Morgan delivered a brief but impassioned speech about the importance of public protest, talking about the days after Diana's death.

"What do we have to do to get our leaders to listen to us?" he asked.

"What do we have to do to get them to change tack?

"In 1997 2.2 million people went on the streets of London, sleeping rough, bringing the biggest city in Europe to a standstill, so that a stubborn 70-year-old lady would fly from Aberdeen to London.

"What are we going to have to do when it's really important?"

Peter O'Toole, who had been nominated for Venus, lost out to Forest Whitaker's portrayal of Ugandan dictator Idi Amin in The Last King of Scotland in the best actor category.

Borat was beaten to the best comedy or musical film award by Dreamgirls.

Laurie won the gong for best actor in a TV drama for his portrayal of cantankerous Dr Gregory House in medical drama House.

Irons picked up the award for supporting actor in a TV series,

miniseries or movie for Elizabeth I, in which he played her lover, the Earl of Leicester.

The Channel 4/HBO series itself also got a gong.

Bill Nighy won the best actor in a TV miniseries or movie for Gideon's Daughter, the BBC drama which also earned Blunt a best supporting actress honour.

Laurie said his award was "absolutely stunning", while Irons said it was "wonderful" to win.

Referring to the vast quantity of free gifts on offer to nominees and presenters, Laurie joked: "Nobody offers you a free acceptance speech. I'd love a speech by Dolce & Gabbana."

Dreamgirls, the musical about a Supremes-style Motown girl group, won a total of three awards.

Eddie Murphy got best supporting actor in comedy or musical and former American Idol finalist Jennifer Hudson was best supporting actress.

Meryl Streep picked up the Globe for best actress in a musical or comedy for The Devil Wears Prada, and Clint Eastwood's Japanese-language Second World War saga Letters From Iwo Jima won the honour for foreign-language film.

Cars took the first-ever Golden Globe for animated film and Warren Beatty received the Cecil B DeMille Award for lifetime achievement.

Another success story was Ugly Betty, which won the prize for TV musical or comedy series.

Its star, America Ferrera, won for best actress in a TV musical or comedy series.

The Golden Globes are Hollywood's second-biggest film honours and with a strong history of forecasting eventual Academy Awards winners are often seen as of a dress rehearsal for the Oscars.

Golden Globes: The winners


-Picture, Drama: -"Babel"

-Actress, Drama: Helen Mirren, "The Queen"

-Actor, Drama: Forest Whitaker, "The Last King of Scotland"

-Picture, Musical or Comedy: "Dreamgirls"

-Actress, Musical or Comedy: Meryl Streep, "The Devil Wears Prada"

-Actor, Musical or Comedy: Sacha Baron Cohen, "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan"

-Supporting Actress: Jennifer Hudson, "Dreamgirls"

-Supporting Actor: Eddie Murphy, "Dreamgirls"

-Director: Martin Scorsese, "The Departed"

-Movie Screenplay: Peter Morgan, "The Queen"

-Foreign Language: "Letters From Iwo Jima," USA/Japan

-Original Score: Alexandre Desplat, "The Painted Veil"

-Original Song: "The Song of the Heart" from "Happy Feet"

-Animated Film: "Cars"


-Series, Drama: "Grey's Anatomy," ABC

-Actress, Drama: Kyra Sedgwick, "The Closer"

-Actor, Drama: Hugh Laurie, "House"

-Series, Musical or Comedy: "Ugly Betty," ABC

-Actress, Musical or Comedy: America Ferrera, "Ugly Betty"

-Actor, Musical or Comedy: Alec Baldwin, "30 Rock"

-Miniseries or movie: "Elizabeth I," HBO

-Actress, Miniseries or Movie: Helen Mirren, "Elizabeth I"

-Actor, Miniseries or Movie: Bill Nighy, "Gideon's Daughter"

-Supporting Actress, Series, Miniseries or Movie: Emily Blunt, "Gideon's Daughter"

-Supporting Actor, Series, Miniseries or Movie: Jeremy Irons, "Elizabeth I"

-Cecil B. DeMille Award: Warren Beatty