British stars among major upsets at Golden Globes

Chiwetel Ejiofor, Emma Thompson, Steve McQueen and Judi Dench all miss out on silverware last night as American Hustle dominated the acting categories

As last night’s Golden Globes ceremony swung into action, its British nominees were among the hot favourites in a number of categories. But as the awards presentation drew to a close, just one was clutching silverware after a string of shock upsets during the course of the evening. 


Dancing on the Edge actress Jacqueline Bisset was the sole Briton to take home a Globe, winning best supporting actress in a drama miniseries for her role in the BBC2 period drama, beating off competition from fellow British star Janet McTeer (The White Queen). 

The win came ahead of a number of Brits missing out in this year’s major categories, with hotly-tipped 12 Years a Slave actor Chiwetel Ejiofor losing in the best actor in a drama category to Dallas Buyers Club’s Matthew McConaughey, who told the audience the award was “unexpected, but graciously accepted”.

Also in that category was Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom actor Idris Elba – he and Ejiofor were each nominated a second time for best actor in a miniseries for their roles in Luther and Dancing on the Edge, missing out to Michael Douglas for Behind the Candelabra.

Emma Thompson was another British star tipped for Golden Globes glory for her portrayal of Mary Poppins writer PL Travers in Saving Mr Banks. She was shortlisted for best actress in a drama alongside fellow Brits Judi Dench (Philomena) and Kate Winslet (Labor Day) but all three actresses lost out to Cate Blanchett for her turn as neurotic Jasmine Francis in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine. 

Steve McQueen – whose feature 12 Years a Slave won the coveted best drama award – failed to add best director to his collection. That category was won by Alfonso Cuaron who claimed Gravity’s sole award of the night.

And while American Hustle headlined the ceremony with three awards, including acting accolades for Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence, Christian Bale failed to follow suit in the best actor in a comedy category, missing out to Leonardo DiCaprio’s raucous performance as Jordan Belfort in The Wolf of Wall Street.

Despite dominating their category in terms of nominations, the British actresses nominated for their work in a miniseries had to make do with second place as Top of the Lake’s Elisabeth Moss triumphed over Helena Bonham Carter (Burton and Taylor), Helen Mirren (Phil Spector) and Rebecca Ferguson (The White Queen). And over in the best television series shortlist, 2011 winner Downton Abbey walked away empty-handed, with the award going to Breaking Bad whose star Bryan Cranston was also recognised as best actor.