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Last Updated: Monday, 17 September 2007, 08:34 GMT 09:34 UK
Sopranos wins top prize at Emmys
Left-right: The Sopranos stars James Gandolfini, Edie Falco and Jamie-Lynn Sigler at the Emmy Awards.
The Sopranos last won the best drama prize in 2004
The Sopranos has crowned the end of its final season with the top prize at the Emmy TV Awards in Los Angeles.

The mob drama, which ended in the US in June, took best drama series plus two other awards at the most prestigious prize-giving ceremony of the TV year.

But Sopranos star James Gandolfini was beaten to the best actor award by James Spader, who appears in Boston Legal.

UK comic Ricky Gervais won best comedy actor, while Dame Helen Mirren took best drama actress in a mini-series.

Helen Mirren
Drama series: The Sopranos
Comedy series: 30 Rock
Drama actor: James Spader
Drama actress: Sally Field
Comedy actor: Ricky Gervais
Comedy actress: America Ferrara
Mini-series/TV movie actor: Robert Duvall
Mini-series/TV movie actress: Dame Helen Mirren (above)

Dame Helen, who won an Oscar earlier this year for The Queen, said: "You know, you Americans are wonderfully generous people.

"You're a lot of other things as well - some good, some bad - but you know if I was to categorise your natures it's generosity above all."

Her Emmy was for her role as Detective Superintendent Jane Tennison in Prime Suspect: The Final Act.

Gervais, who was not at the ceremony, was honoured for playing hapless actor Andy Millman in his BBC sitcom Extras.

He provided one of the biggest surprises of the night, beating favourites Steve Carell, who stars in the US version of The Office, and 30 Rock's Alec Baldwin.

America Ferrera, star of comedy Ugly Betty, won the award for best actress in a comedy.

The Sopranos cast celebrated their best drama win by taking to the stage as a star-studded audience gave them a standing ovation.

"This amazing cast is really what it comes down to. It really is all about them," the show's creator and director David Chase said.

America Ferrera
Ugly Betty star America Ferrera won best comedy actress

It had missed the top prize five times in the past, last winning in 2004. But the series lost out on all of the acting awards this year.

Double Oscar winner Sally Field took her third Emmy for outstanding lead actress in a drama for the series Brothers and Sisters.

She beat Edie Falco, who was in the running for playing Tony Soprano's long-suffering wife Carmela.

James Spader, who won best drama actor, said: "I feel like I just stole a pile of money from the mob and they're all sitting right over there."

Supporting actor gongs went to Terry O'Quinn, who plays the mysterious John Locke in castaway drama Lost, and Katherine Heigl of hospital show Grey's Anatomy.

The best comedy award was won by 30 Rock, set in the offices of a New York television studio.

Perhaps the biggest cheer of the night went to former US vice president Al Gore, who won an award for his Current TV - a cable channel based on viewer-created content.

Mr Gore, who got a standing ovation and screams from the audience, won outstanding creative achievement in interactive television.

"We are trying to open up the television medium so that viewers can help to make television and join the conversation of democracy and reclaim American democracy by talking about the choices we have to make," he said.

A show starring veteran crooner Tony Bennett on his 80th birthday also picked up three awards, including best individual performance in a variety or music programme.

Highlights of the Emmys ceremony

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