Aids drama Angels in America dominated US TV's Emmy Awards on Sunday, winning seven prizes at the ceremony.
Al Pacino and Meryl Streep won honours for Angels in America
Meryl Streep won best actress for the HBO show while Al Pacino won best actor in a mini-series for his part as a man dying of Aids.
HBO also won best drama for its mobster series, The Sopranos, denying NBC rival The West Wing a record fifth win.
The Sopranos won four awards in total, while comedy series Sex and the City won two awards.
The West Wing's Allison Janney scooped best actress in a drama series, while Kelsey Grammer won best comedy actor for his role in NBC's Frasier, which finished its final season earlier this year.
2004 PRIMETIME EMMYS
Angels in America - 7 awards
The Sopranos - 4
Arrested Development - 3
Frasier, Sex and The City, The Daily Show - 2
The Practice, Something The Lord Made, Deadwood, Elaine Stritch: At Liberty - 1
And David Hyde Pearce picked up best supporting actor for his role as the neurotic Niles in the comedy.
James Spader won best actor in a drama series for his role in ABC's The Practice at the ceremony, held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles.
Sex and the City success
Sarah Jessica Parker took best comedy actress for HBO's Sex and the City, which also ended this year.
In her speech she thanked "my family, my friends, my agent, my laywer, my business manager, my publicist - and passers-by who always wanted the best for me".
"This is great punctuation for the end of a long sentence," said Parker.
After five previous nominations but no win, she added it was "well
worth the wait".
Co-star Cynthia Nixon was named best supporting actress in a comedy for playing Miranda in the hit series.
Sarah Jessica Parker won best comedy actress
Critically-acclaimed Fox show Arrested Development - about a son dealing with his dysfunctional family after his father is imprisoned - picked up three awards, including best comedy and best comedy writing. BBC Two and BBC Four will screen the series in the UK later this year.
Angels in America, set in the Aids crisis in 1985, took a total of seven awards on the night.
The best supporting awards in a drama or mini-series went to Mary-Louise Parker and Jeffrey Wright for Angels in America, which was screened in the UK by Channel 4 in February.
The film's creator Tony Kushner received the best writer award, while Mike Nichols won best director.
In his acceptance speech, playwright Kushner thanked his "husband" Mark, adding: "One of these days we can get a legal marriage licence and you can make an honest homosexual out of me."
Streep also heaped praise on the mini-series as she picked up her best actress award.
"The bravest thing in the world is that writer who sits alone in a room and works out his grief, his rage, his imagination and his deep desire to make people laugh. And
he makes a work of art that then transforms the world with
the truth, because that's all we want, you know," she
"It's all we need."
For the past four years political series The West Wing has dominated the drama awards, but this year it was the turn of The Sopranos.
As well as best drama, two of its actors picked up supporting actors in a drama awards, Michael Imperioli and Drea de Matteo.
Sopranos creator David Chase confirmed the series would end next year, after season six.
Speaking about its Emmy success, he said: "It's hard to talk about it. We put a lot of work into it, and we've gotten better at our jobs and it's good that
it finally paid off."
Kelsey Grammer won best comedy actor for Frasier
But its two of its stars, James Gandolfini and Edie Falco, failed to repeat their best actor wins of last year.
But in collecting the best drama award, Galdofini found himself drowned out by music as he tried to acknowledge an infantry unit in Iraq that
had named its tank after Tony Soprano's boat, the Stugots.
Organisers said cutting him off had been unintentional.
James Spader won the best actor in a drama series for his role as Alan Shore, having only joined the cast of the legal series in 2003.
The individual performance in a variety or music show went to veteran Broadway entertainer Elaine Stritch for her autobiographical show At Liberty.
But there was disappointment for British nominees with Emma Thompson missing out for Angels in America, and Dame Helen Mirren also lost out after being nominated for Prime Suspect 6.