Colin Firth and Natalie Portman have claimed acting honours at the 2011 Golden Globes, while The Social Network was the big film winner of the night.
The Facebook movie won four prizes, including best drama, best score, best director for David Fincher and best screenplay for Aaron Sorkin, and improved its position as an Academy Awards favourite.
Fincher said he thought it was strange when the script came to him, since he usually makes much darker films. “I’m personally loath to acknowledge the kind of wonderful response this film has received for fear of becoming addicted to it, so suffice it to say, it’s been really nice.”
Winning the dramatic lead-acting prizes were Firth for the British monarchy saga The King’s Speech and Portman for the psychosexual thriller Black Swan.
British actor Colin joked that the award helped validate him as he got older. “I don’t know if this qualifies as gentle reassurance, but right now this is all that stands between me and a Harley-Davidson.”
Accepting her gong, Natalie thanked the film’s choreographer, her fiance Benjamin Millepied. He also appears in the movie, and his character doesn’t want to sleep with hers.
“He’s the best actor! It’s not true, he totally wants to sleep with me,” Natalie said, giggling.
Lead-acting honours for the Globes’ musical or comedy categories went to Annette Bening for the lesbian-family story The Kids Are All Right, named best comedy film, and Paul Giamatti for Barney’s Version.
The boxing drama The Fighter earned both supporting actor Globes, for Christian Bale and Melissa Leo.
Robert De Niro received the Cecil B DeMille Award for career achievement, and gave an uncharacteristic acceptance speech, suggesting that most people in the room hadn’t seen a lot of the films he was proud of.