Bush-themed movie wins best TV movie/miniseries

“Death of a President,” the controversial British movie that dramatizes what would happen if an assassin murdered George W. Bush, won the Intl. Emmy Award for best TV movie/miniseries of the 2006-07 season.

During the formal event attended by more than 1,000 industry executives at the New York Hilton on Monday night, actress Gloria Reuben (“ER”) presented the Intl. Emmy to Gabriel Range, the director of “Death of a President,” and Simon Finch, who co-produced and co-wrote it with Range.

In another surprise, Poland won its first Emmy in the 35-year history of the Intl. Awards for the live-action children’s series “The Magic Tree.” Host Roger Bart presented the Emmy in the children/young-people category to Andrjez Maleszka, the writer-director of “Magic Tree,” and Hanna Probulska-Dzislow, editor of the series.

“Death of a President” represented one of seven winners among British suppliers out of the total of 10 awards given out for international-TV programming.

In separate prizes, Al Gore received the Intl. Emmy founders award for both his role in creating the Current TV network, a news/information program service for young adults, and his drive to “alert the world to one of the great challenges of our time: global warming.” Robert De Niro presented the award to Gore.

And the directorate award went to Patrick Le Lay, chairman of the TF1 Group, for turning TF1 into a “multimedia organization that is a pioneer in many of the emerging new digital platforms.” Actress Carole Bouquet made the presentation.

In other programming awards, Jim Broadbent finished in a tie with Pierre Bokma for best performance by an actor. Broadbent, who couldn’t attend the event, won for the Granada TV series “The Street,” which ran on BBC One, and Bokma won for “The Chosen One,” a Dutch TV movie from VPRO TV and IDTV Film BV. Bokma accepted from Sam Waterston (“Law & Order”).

For best actress, Muriel Robin snared the award for her performance as the title character in the French movie “Marie Besnard — The Poisoner,” a courtroom drama from Ramona, RTBF and To Do Today. Alan Cumming was the presenter.

“Little Britain Abroad,” from the BBC, won for best comedy series, and John Plowman accepted the award from George Wendt (“Cheers”).

For best documentary, “Stephen Fry — The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive” took the honors. Fry suffers from the illness and uses the docu to show how medication keeps him from going off the rails. Ross Wilson is the producer-director.

BBC Entertainment’s “How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria,” a reality series that focuses on the process leading up to the selection of an actor to play the lead in a new Andrew Lloyd Webber stage production of “The Sound of Music,” won the Emmy for best nonscripted entertainment.

The prize for arts programming, presented by Eric Bogosian (“Talk Radio”), went to Clare Beavan for producing and directing “Simon Schama’s Power of Art: Bernini,” from the BBC and WNET.

“The Street,” which earned Broadbent his best-actor award, also got the nod for best drama series.

In the press room following her acceptance of the drama series nod, “Street” exec producer Sita Williams said the BBC is negotiating for the format rights to the series with an American producer. The American version would use settings in the U.S. and American actors but follow closely the plots and dialogue of the British “Street.” Williams said the second series of six “Street” episodes has just begun running on the BBC, and a third cycle of six will go into production.

The Intl. Children’s Day of Broadcasting Award, not technically an Emmy, was given to National Broadcasting of Thailand for a multipart program on AIDS that was written entirely by children.

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