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We won!

Or should I say…they won. We were elated to watch last night’s Golden Globes and see Bill Nighy and Emily Blunt – the stars of BBC AMERICA’s Gideon’s Daughter – step up to the podium. Their competition was fierce, but the wins couldn’t be more deserved. Nighy plays Gideon Warner, a deeply depressed PR guru who has become sick of the hype machine, and Emily Blunt plays his embittered daughter Natasha, who desires to get as far away from her father as possible. Set against the backdrop of Princess Diana’s death, it is a beautifully underplayed story of personal and national grief.

As he headed for the podium, Bill Nighy completely bypassed that ridiculous maze of tables and walked behind the stage. It was a trendsetting move – the irascible, hernia-addled Alec Baldwin later followed suit. When he accepted his award, Nighy quipped, “I thought prizes were damaging and divisive…until I got one. Now I think they are meaningful and real.” The man is cool.

It was a British tsunami last night, with UK talent scooping up NINEawards, two of them claimed by Dame Helen Mirren. She won for The Queen and for Elizabeth I. Her co-star, Jeremy Irons, Hugh Laurie, and Sacha Baron Cohen also picked up gongs. Elizabeth I was named Best Miniseries or Motion Picture.

An awards show always needs a good Bush bash, and this year it came from a Brit, screenwriter Peter Morgan, who won for The Queen. He mentioned how the British public showed their outrage at the royal family’s apparent apathy toward Princess Diana’s death:

“What do we have to do to get our leaders to listen to us? 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 gonna do when it’s really important?”

Cough *unjust war* cough. I’ve yet to see The Queen – what a bad Anglophile I am – but one hopes his screenwriting is subtler.

Oh, and by the way, I’m so over Sacha Baron Cohen. Compare his “anus and testicles” acceptance speech for Borat to Hugh Laurie‘s witty monologue when he won for House. It’s like watching British comedy devolve before your eyes: Laurie is effortlessly funny, if a bit of a shameless showboat; he thinks on his feet. Baron Cohen’s baiting of NBC’s censors was trite and rehearsed. Perhaps Borat doesn’t require much acting for SBC…

In other news:

  • Celebrity Big Brother has been inundated with complaints about Jade Goody, Danielle Lloyd, and Jo O’Meara‘s racism toward Bollywood actress, Shilpa Shetty. Journalist Carole Malone says it’s jealousy. “Shilpa is too good-looking for her own good.”(BBC)

  • Stephen Brook in Guardian’s Organ Grinder wades in with his take on the controversy. “Last night, the trio’s emnity against Shilpa exploded because Shetty a) went and lay down on her bed, b) put on her fairy wings because she was depressed and c) wanted to cook the chicken for 45 minutes. That’s it. I didn’t see any racism when I watched last night, just a trio of complete bitches making life thoroughly unpleasant for someone else.”

  • Naomi Campbell pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor assault charge on her former housekeeper.(The Sun)
  • Victoria Beckham‘s L.A. house hunt.(Daily Mail)
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By Kevin Wicks
Kevin Wicks is the founding editor of Anglophenia.