If you didn't think James Cameron was the favorite to dominate the Oscars, think again. The science-fiction blockbuster 'Avatar' won best drama at the Golden Globes and picked up the directing honor for Cameron on Sunday, raising the 'Titanic' filmmaker's prospects for another Academy Awards triumph. It was a repeat of Cameron's Globes night 12 years ago, when 'Titanic' won best drama and the directing prize on its way to dominating the Oscars.
If you didn't think James Cameron was the favorite to dominate the Oscars, think again. The science-fiction blockbuster 'Avatar' won best drama at the Golden Globes and picked up the directing honor for Cameron on Sunday, raising the 'Titanic' filmmaker's prospects for another Academy Awards triumph. It was a repeat of Cameron's Globes night 12 years ago, when 'Titanic' won best drama and the directing prize on its way to dominating the Oscars.

This time, though, instead of being "king of the world," as Cameron declared at the Oscars, he has become king of an alien landscape, elevating space fantasy to enormous critical acclaim.

"'Avatar' asks us to see that everything is connected, all human beings to each other, and us to the Earth. And if you have to go four and a half light years to another, made-up planet to appreciate this miracle of the world that we have right here, well, you know what, that's the wonder of cinema right there, that's the magic," Cameron said.

Winning the dramatic-acting honors were Sandra Bullock for the football tale 'The Blind Side' and Jeff Bridges for the country-music story 'Crazy Heart.' The crowd gave a standing ovation to Bridges, a beloved veteran generally overlooked for key Hollywood honors.


Meryl Streep beat herself in the best-actress category for comedies, with 'Julie and Julia' coming out ahead of her work in 'It's Complicated.' She turned her acceptance speech into a touching tribute to her mother:

"I just want to say that in my long career I've played so many extraordinary women that basically I'm getting mistaken for one. I want to be very clear that the fact that I'm a vessel for other people's stories and other people's lives. This year I got to play not only one of the most beloved women in America, but I also got to secretly pay homage to my own personal not-so-famous hero, that's my mother ... A lot of the people in this room knew my mother ... she just had no patience for gloom and doom. I'm not like that. I come to Golden Globes weekend, and I am really honestly conflicted how to have my happy movie self in the face of everything that I hear of in the real world. I want to say that's when I had my mother's voice come with me saying "Partners in health, put your dress on, put on a smile and be damn grateful that you have the dollars to help ... I am really grateful, so thank you."
Earlier, Mo'Nique won the supporting-actress nod for her role as a loathsome, abusive welfare mother in the Harlem drama 'Precious.' The prize Sunday marks a dramatic turning point for Mo'Nique, who was mainly known for lowbrow comedy but startled audiences with her ferocious performance in 'Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' By Sapphire.'

The Vegas bachelor bash 'The Hangover' won for best musical or comedy, bringing uncharacteristic awards attention for broad comedy, a genre that often gets overlooked at Hollywood honors.

The Showtime series, 'Dexter,' swept the TV acting awards. Michael C. Hall with Best Actor and John Lithgow, for supporting. The acting veteran summed up his role in the show saying, "I've had the most wonderful time creeping out the entire country for the last six months."

But all eyes were on Hall, who revealed days ago he is battling cancer. Making no reference to his disease during his acceptance speech, Hall spoke proudly as his co-stars like Lithgow were seen in the crowd teary-eyed in support of their friend.

Toni Colette upset favorite Tina Fey for Best Actress in a TV Series, Comedy. Collette won for her role as a mother with split personalities in Showtime's 'United States of Tara.' After winning the award in 2008 and 2009 for '30 Rock,' it's a surprise let-down for Fey.

While accepting the award for Best Actress in a TV Series, Drama, Julianna Margulies poked fun at NBC over it's scheduling woes, thanking her network (CBS) for airing dramas like her acclaimed 'The Good Wife.'

Drew Barrymore did a bit of rambling while accepting for best actress in a miniseries, for 'Grey Gardens.' "I didn't know the etiquette for winning these awards," she said, "I've been meeting with the Hollywood Foreign Press for 97 years."

Though one of Hollywood's biggest parties, the Globes bore somber reminders of tragedy in the real world, many stars wearing ribbons in support of earthquake victims in Haiti.

Films from Pixar Animation, the Disney outfit that made "Up," have won all four prizes for animated movies since the Globes introduced the category in 2006. Past Pixar winners are "WALL-E," ''Ratatouille" and "Cars."

"Up" features the voice of Ed Asner in a tale of a lonely, bitter widower who renews his zest for adventure by flying his house off under helium balloons to South America, where he encounters his childhood hero and a hilarious gang of talking canines.

"When it came to finding the heart of the film, we didn't have to look very hard," said "Up" director Pete Docter, whose film also won for musical score. "Our inspiration was all around us. Our grandparents, our parents, our wives, our kids. Our talking dogs."

Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner won the screenplay honor for 'Up in the Air,' which Reitman also directed.

'Mad Men' won for best TV drama, while Michael C. Hall won for best actor in a TV drama for "Dexter," in which he plays a serial killer with a code of ethics, killing only other murderers. Hall's publicists revealed this past week that Hall is being treated for Hodgkin's lymphoma and that the cancer is in remission.

"It's really a hell of a thing to go to work in a place where everybody gives a damn. That's really the case with 'Dexter,'" Hall said. "It's a dream job. I'm so grateful."

The Globes got a makeover, featuring Ricky Gervais as master of ceremonies, the first time in 15 years the show had a host.

Gervais opened by mocking Steve Carell, star of the U.S. version of "The Office," based on Gervais' British comedy series. While a stone-faced Carell watched, Gervais yammered on about how fans love Carell and wonder where he gets his ideas from.

Carell then mouthed and pantomimed, "I will break you," to Gervais, an executive producer on the U.S. version of the show.

Gervais joked about the international causes near and dear to Hollywood stars.

"You can be a little Asian child with no possessions and see a picture of Angelina Jolie and you think, 'mommy,'" he said.

Gervais also jokingly marveled that his 2009 comedy "The Invention of Lying" was not nominated. The movie bombed with critics and audiences.

Umbrellas were a must-have accessory for celebrities walking the red carpet outside the Beverly Hilton Hotel as southern California's dry winter suddenly turned wet. "It's raining a lot -- I'm worried that my tattoos are going to start showing," actress Tina Fey joked to Ryan Seacrest during a red carpet show broadcast by E! television.

George Clooney didn't let the showers stop him from stepping out into the rain to sign autographs for fans.