Page last updated at 10:23 GMT, Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Julie Walters and David Frost win International Emmys

Sir David Frost and Barbara Walters

Julie Walters and Ben Whishaw have taken the top acting prizes at the International Emmys while Sir David Frost won a lifetime achievement award.

Walters won for BBC assisted suicide drama A Short Stay In Switzerland while Whishaw was honoured for the corporation's Criminal Justice series.

British shows won in a further three categories at the event in New York.

Winners of the awards, which celebrate TV made outside of the US, were chosen from 41 nominees from 17 countries.

Sir David, 70, was presented with the Founders Award by US broadcaster Barbara Walters who told the audience at the city's Hilton hotel that he was "the best interviewer there is and he makes it look so easy".

Sir David's TV career began in the early 1960s when he hosted satirical show That Was The Week That Was.


Sir David Frost receives his award from Barbara Walters - Courtesy International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences

He went on to become a heavyweight interviewer, both in the UK and the US, and the story of his tussles with former President Richard Nixon was made into Oscar-nominated film Frost/Nixon.

Brazil first

In a recorded tribute, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said: "This night, it's an occasion for us to look back and to thank you for what you've done, not just for Britain and British broadcasting, but for broadcasting around the world."

Julie Walters
Walters played a character with progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP)

Walters, 59, won best actress for playing a doctor with an incurable neurological disease seeking assisted suicide at a Zurich clinic.

Whishaw, 29, meanwhile, played a man accused of murdering a woman after a night of drink and drug-fuelled excess in five-part drama Criminal Justice.

Neither Walters or Whishaw were at the New York awards, hosted by Graham Norton.

Other British winners included CBBC's Dustbin Baby in the children and young people category.

Channel 4's The Mona Lisa Curse, featuring critic Robert Hughes's reflections on contemporary art, won the arts programming award.

And historian Niall Ferguson's The Ascent of Money, also shown on Channel 4, took the documentary prize.

Japanese programme Hoshi Shinichi's Short Shorts won the comedy award while Danish show The Protectors took best drama series.

Dutch show The Phone - in which members of the public answer a hidden ringing telephone to win prizes - took the non-scripted entertainment award.

Brazil won the "telenovela" category with India, A Love Story - the country's first ever International Emmy success.

And German production The Wolves of Berlin was awarded in the best TV movie/mini-series category.

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