U.S. atop Banff list

HBO tops among 18 Yank noms; Brits get 15

MONTREAL — U.S. producers and broadcasters lead the race for the Banff Rockie TV Awards with 18 nominations, it was announced Tuesday.

HBO heads the U.S. charge with nine noms, followed by PBS outlet WGBH with four. Awards will be handed out June 9 during the Banff Television Festival, which runs June 8-13 in the picturesque Alberta town of Banff, high in the Rockies.

They will be up against stiff competition from the U.K., which received 15 nods; France, with nine; and German producers and webs, with eight.

The U.S. dominates the comedy category thanks to HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Everybody Loves Raymond” (from Where’s Lunch Prods.) and Carsey-Werner sitcom “That ’70s Show.” The other nominees in the category are British: “Coupling” from Hartswood Films and “The Sketch Show” from Avalon Television and Babycow.

U.S. shows also lead in the continuing series/drama category due to HBO offerings — gritty prison drama “Oz,” Mob hit “The Sopranos” and funeral-home drama “Six Feet Under” — and John Wells Prods./Warner Bros. Television series “West Wing.” The lone non-U.S. entry is the U.K. series “Spooks” from Kudos Prods.

The miniseries nominees include “Armadillo” from A&E and BBC, BBC/WGBH’s “Daniel Deronda,” Swedish/Norwegian/Finnish co-production “The First Gypsy in Space,” Edgar J. Scherick Associates/Avenue Pictures’ “Path to War” and “Sons and Lovers” from U.K.-based Company Pictures.

Eighty-three shows repping 17 countries are nominated in 14 categories. Nominated shows will be screened by a seven-member international jury that will decide the winners as well as awarding the C$25,000 ($17,000) NHK President’s Prize for HDTV entry and the $34,000 Global Television Grand Prize for best of the festival.

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