Bumper night for British TV at the International Emmys

Nigel Lythgoe and Christopher Eccleston are among the home-grown winners

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It was a triumphant evening for British TV productions at last night’s International Emmys, with home-grown talent scooping five awards at the ceremony.

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Julie Walters bagged the best actress gong for her performance as Mo Mowlam in Channel 4’s biopic about the late politician, Mo.

Jimmy McGovern’s Accused won best drama, and its star, Christopher Eccleston, was named best actor for his role as a plumber who finds £20,000 in the back of a cab.

Gareth Malone Goes to Glyndebourne won best arts programme and production company Twenty Twenty bagged the non-scripted entertainment award for BBC3’s The World’s Strictest Parents.

The ceremony was bolstered by a surprise appearance from Lady Gaga, who presented an honorary prize to American Idol’s executive producer, Nigel Lythgoe.

Elsewhere at the awards, which took place at the New York Hilton, Belgium won best comedy series for Benidorm Bastards, a hidden-camera show about elderly people playing pranks on youngsters, and Canada bagged the best documentary prize for Life with Murder, about a family torn apart by a case of fratricide.

Millennium, a Swedish crime drama, won best TV movie or mini-series and Portugal bagged best telenovela, a serial-drama format that originated in Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries, for Blood Ties.

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The International Emmys are held annually to celebrate TV produced outside the US.