Pepper, Hardcastle win lead, supporting actor

Canada-produced miniseries “The Kennedys” nabbed two key acting prizes at the Industry Gala of the Gemini Awards Wednesday night in Toronto.

The Geminis are the Canadian TV awards, and 61 trophies were doled out Wednesday for drama, youth, comedy and variety categories in a gala hosted by CBC Radio personality Jian Ghomeshi.

Canuck Barry Pepper won for lead actor in a drama or mini for his role as Bobby Kennedy in “The Kennedys,” and Diana Hardcastle won supporting actress in a drama or miniseries for her role as Kennedy matriarch Rose Kennedy.

Other acting prizes went to Jackie Richardson for lead actress in drama or miniseries “The Gospel According to the Blues”; Joshua Close, supporting actor in a mini prize for “Sleepyhead”; and Sergio Di Zio, supporting actor in a drama series for cop skein “Flashpoint.”

Jeremy Podeswa took the trophy for direction of a drama series for “The Borgias.”

The Pillars of the Earth” won for TV movie or mini and also landed a trophy for makeup (Colleen Quinton).

Comedy “Call Me Fitz,” which stars Jason Priestley as a used-car salesman, won six Geminis, including for direction in a comedy series (Scott Smith), supporting actor in a comedy series (Ernie Grunwald), supporting actress in a comedy series (Rachel Blanchard) and comedy writing (Pat Bullard).

George Stroumboulopoulos won the talkshow host prize for his popular CBC show “George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight,” and the CBC skating competition “Battle of the Blades” won in the music/variety series category. The entrepreneur contest show “Dragon’s Den” took reality series.

The final Gemini Awards Gala will be held Sept. 7 with the presentation of seven kudos in a CBC broadcast to be hosted by comic Russell Peters.

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