As with last year, British fare won half of the 10 awards at the 38th annual International Emmys Monday. Best Drama Series went to "The Street" for the second time in four years with star Bob Hoskins winning Best Actor while Helena Bonham Carter took home Best Actress for the telefilm "Enid." "Small Island" was named top TV Movie/Mini-Series and "Shaun the Sheep" won the Children/Youth Programming prize for the second time in three years.
Though still laudable, the success rate for British TV programming is on the decline at the International Emmys. Last year, UK shows and stars took just five of their nine races. Two years ago, the Brits prevailed in seven of the eight categories in which they competed and in 2007 they went seven for nine.
The efforts of the academy to take the judging to regions beyond the Anglo-American sphere is working. This year, the Israeli comedy "Traffic Lights" won as did the South Korean documentary "Moon and the Red Bean Cake," the Romaninan arts show "The World According to Ion B.," the Portugese telenovela "My Love," and the Argentinian non-scripted "CQC."
Canadian-born actor Jason Priestley hosted the kudofest in Gotham. Another Canadian transplant, "SNL" creator and producer Lorne Michaels, was presented with the Directorate prize by pals Alec Baldwin and Jimmy Fallon while Simon Cowell received the Founders Award from media magnate Rupert Murdoch.
Photo: Bob Hoskins in "The Street" (BBC)