Babel, Dreamgirls take top Golden Globe Awards

Babel, the powerful ensemble drama that weaves together three interconnected storylines across three continents, took one of two top prizes Monday night at the 64th annual Golden Globe Awards.

Babel, the powerful ensemble drama that weaves together three interconnected storylines across three continents, took one of two top prizes Monday night at the 64th annualGoldenGlobe Awards.

Babel director Alejandro Inarritu accepted the Golden Globe for best motion picture drama. ((Kevork Djansezian/Associated Press))

The multi-lingual movie was named best dramatic film at the glitzy Hollywood ceremony, with director Alejandro Inarritu taking the stage to accept the honour from California governor, former actor and past Golden Globe-winner Arnold Schwarzenegger.

"I swear I have my papers in order, governor," the Mexican director joked, before turning serious and acknowledging the 1,200 people who worked on Babel for more than a year.

"The power of cinema is universal," Inarritu said. Though his film included five different languages, filmmaking "doesn't need translation."

Named the Golden Globes' best musical or comedy film, Dreamgirls solidified its chances at further award season glory. The musical work picked up a trio of trophies at the Globes gala, which is seen asa major indicator of likely Academy Award winners.

Based on the Tony Award-winning Broadway original, Dreamgirls scored wins for its secondary actors: Eddie Murphy won the best supporting actor in a film category, while co-star and former American Idol finalist Jennifer Hudson was named best supporting actress in a film.

"I have always dreamed, but never ever this big. Ever. This goes far beyond anything that I could ever had imagined," said Hudson, who made her feature debut in the film.

Jennifer Hudson won the Golden Globe for best supporting actress for her role as a powerhouse vocalist in the musical Dreamgirls. ((Kevork Djansezian/Associated Press))

Newcomers win, veterans honoured

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which organizes the Golden Globes each year, also honoured newcomers, including television newbies Ugly Betty and 30 Rock.

The former, a fashion magazine satire that originated in Latin America, wasnamed best TV series, musical or comedy. Star America Ferrerawon best actress in amusical or comedy TV series.

"This character … is truly bringing a new face to television," an emotional Ferrera said in her acceptance speech, in which she acknowledged supporting letters she receives from young fans. "It's such an honour to play this role."

Alec Baldwin's turn as abizarre television executiveon30 Rock, which satirizes life behind the scenes at a sketch comedy show, won him the Golden Globe for best TV actor, musical or comedy.

Several Hollywood veteransalso picked up topawards at the Beverly Hilton Hotelgala.

Martin Scorsese won best film director for his mobster thriller The Departed, Clint Eastwood's latest, Letters From Iwo Jima, won best foreign language film, and acclaimed actress Meryl Streep added another honour to her distinguished resumé, picking up a Golden Globe for her role as an evil fashion editor in The Devil Wears Prada.

Six-time winner Streep, whoon Monday night won the trophy for best actress in a musical or comedy film, acknowledged all of the best film actress nominees in her speech.

"This has been such a fun year to watch movies because of you gals. It makes you want to cry with gratitude," she said, jokingly adding "until next year."

The corresponding best musical or comedy film actor award went to British comedian Sacha Baron Cohen for his smash hit Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, based on his popular cable television character.

True to form, Cohen's acceptance speech had a raunchy theme: co-star Ken Davitian's genitalia.

"When I was in that scene and I stared down and saw your two wrinkled golden globes, I thought to myself, I'd better win a bloody award for this," Cohen said.

He added: "Thank you to every American who has not sued me so far."

Mirren, Elizabeth I score multiple awards

British actress Helen Mirren,already considered a front-runner for the upcoming Academy Awards,wonfurther acclaim for herportrayal ofQueen Elizabeth II in The Queen.

"I honestly feel this award belongs to her," Mirren said of the current British monarch, as she accepted the trophy for best actress in a dramatic film.

"I think you fell in love with her and not with me … However, she already has an orb that goes with her sceptre, so I will happily accept this one."

Helen Mirren picked up two lead actress awards for her roles in two royal portraits: the feature film The Queen and the TV film Elizabeth I. ((Kevork Djansezian/Associated Press))

Mirren was also honoured for another royal role: she was named best actress in a TV movie or miniseries for the lead role in Elizabeth I.The production won two others Monday night: itwas also named best miniseries or TV movie and Mirren's co-star Jeremy Irons was named best supporting actor in a series, miniseries or TV movie.

Another of the evening's multiple winners was the TV film Gideon's Daughter, which picked up Golden Globes for actors Bill Nighy (actor in a miniseries or TV movie) and Emily Blunt (supporting actress in a series, miniseries or TV movie).

Other film winners included:

  • Forest Whitaker, winner of the best dramatic film actor trophy for The Last King of Scotland.
  • Cars, which won the inaugural animated feature film award.
  • Writer Peter Morgan, who penned best screenplay winner The Queen.
  • Composer Alexandre Desplat, who won best original score for his work on The Painted Veil.
  • Prince, whowon the best original song category for his tune The Song of the Heart from the animated penguin film Happy Feet.

Other television winners included:

  • Grey's Anatomy, which won best dramatic TV series.
  • Kyra Sedgwick, who won best actress in a TV drama for her turn on The Closer.
  • Hugh Laurie, who won best actor in a TV drama for his prickly role on House.

The evening also included a tribute to Hollywood veteran actor Warren Beatty, who was presented with the Cecil B. DeMille Award. Past winners include such film luminariesas Alfred Hitchcock, Lucille Ball, Sidney Poitier, Sophia Loren, Sean Connery and Barbra Streisand.

The Golden Globes, which are voted upon by nearly 90 members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, are widely considered among the most important indicators of which films will be honoured at the subsequent Academy Awards.

With files from the Associated Press