"Argo" was the surprise winner at the 70th annual Golden Globes awards Sunday night, earning awards for best drama and for Ben Affleck as director, while Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln" won only one statue, for Daniel-Day Lewis as best dramatic actor.
In a breathless, rapid-fire speech, Affleck gushed over the names of other nominees presenter Halle Berry had read off: Spielberg for "Lincoln," Ang Lee for "Life of Pi," Kathryn Bigelow for "Zero Dark Thirty" and Quentin Tarantino for "Django Unchained."
"Look, I don't care what the award is. When they put your name next to the names she just read off, it's an extraordinary thing in your life," Affleck said.
The big wins for "Argo" were in an evening that saw "Lincoln," widely presumed to be an Oscar favorite, losing nearly all of its seven nominations to other contenders.
Tommy Lee Jones, who played Thaddeus Stevens in "Lincoln," lost supporting actor to Christoph Waltz, in Tarantino's "Django Unchained." Pulitzer-winning playwright Tony Kushner saw the original screenplay award handed to Tarntino. Composer Mychael Danna won best score for "Life of Pi" rather than the esteemed John Williams. Jennifer Lawrence won best actress in a movie comedy for her role in "Silver Linings Playbook."
In terms of number of awards, "Les Miserables" won the most, with three. It won best comedy or musical, and Hugh Jackman won best actor in that category. Anne Hathaway also won best supporting actress, beating out Sally Field, who played Mary Todd. Still, the younger actress praised the older one as an inspiration for showing her "how the Flying Nun grew up to be Norma Rae."
In the TV categories, Showtime and HBO racked up multiple honors for, respectively, CIA thriller "Homeland" and "Game Change," the movie about Sarah Palin's rise as the 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate. Lena Dunham, of HBO's "Girls," won for best actress in a comedy or musical series. And the series, whose second season began Sunday night, won for best comedy.
THE OPENING SALVOS. Hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler started swinging at their Hollywood audience early, with Fey noting, "You can smell the pills from here." She called Quentin Tarantino "the star of all my sexual nightmares" and noted that Anne Hathaway in "Les Miserables" had never looked so "alone and abandoned like that since you were on stage with James Franco at the Oscars." Poehler claimed that Meryl Streep was out with the flu -- "and I hear she's amazing in it" -- and Fey said of the three-time Globes host "Ricky Gervais could not be here tonight because he is no longer technically in show business."
PRESIDENT'S ENDORSEMENT. Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln" was introduced by none other than Bill Clinton, who praised its portrayal of "enduring progress forged in a cauldron of both principle and compromise." A starstruck Poehler followed him, gushing, "What an exciting special guest! That was Hillary Clinton's husband!"
THE LATEST BOND GIRL. Adele, whose "Skyfall" theme beat out "Suddenly" from "Les Miserables," accepted the award with down-to-earth South London charm. "I'd just come for a night out," she said with surprise. "Thank you so much for letting me be part of your world for one night."
AUSTRIAN ACCENT. Arnold Schwarzenegger told Sylvester Stallone they were presenting the foreign language award because "English is for both of us a foreign language." Stallone responded: "I can't be as bad as you, trust me. You're horrible. You've been here how long?"Arnold's countryman, Michael Haneke, won for his film "Amour."
THE GHOST OF GERVAIS. Leave it to presenter Sacha Baron Cohen to raise the mean quotient. Making fun of his "Les Miserables" co-stars, he scoffed at Russell Crowe's singing lessons ("that was money well spent") and accused Helena Bonham Carter of dispensing favors to the Academy.
With The Associated Press.