Arnold Schwarzenegger and Emma Thompson at
Dave M. Bennet/Getty Images

A talent downpour stormed Grosvenor House’s ballroom Sunday with the annual Empire Awards in London.

Who would win the Hero Award? There sat the Austrian Oak, Arnold Schwarzenegger, a traditional favorite. Or perhaps, Hugh Jackman?

Yet, with Tom Cruise in the house, the competition split wide open. As J.J. Abrams wisely pointed out though, “Giving Tom Cruise a hero award, it’s like giving a toy to Santa Claus. There’s no point.”

The result came from far left field, confirming that in the 21st century, it’s brains that rule above mere brawn, with Simon Pegg crowned as the night’s official hero.

Some things remain unchanged, as Emma Thompson’s winning wit brought her usual hilarity to the stage.

Scrutinising the Empire Awards’ evolution to its present showy affair, Thompson reminisced over the early trophies. “The awards in those days were pretty much anything that came to hand,” she observed. Napkins, you know, penile attachments. I mean anything.”

With that conclusion, guests bailed on the ballroom, dispersing into the depths of Mayfair. Their destination: the wrap party at Quaglino’s.

Full list of winners:

EMPIRE 25th AWARD: The Legend of Our Lifetime
Tom Cruise

EMPIRE 25th AWARD: The Action Hero of Our Lifetime
Arnold Schwarzenegger

EMPIRE ICON
Hugh Jackman

EMPIRE HERO
Simon Pegg

EMPIRE INSPIRATION 
Paul Greengrass

BEST MALE NEWCOMER 
Aidan Turner (The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug)


BEST FEMALE NEWCOMER

Margot Robbie (The Wolf Of Wall Street)

BEST HORROR
The Conjuring 

BEST COMEDY 
Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa


BEST THRILLER


The Hunger Games: Catching Fire 


BEST SCI-FI/FANTASY
The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug


BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Michael Fassbender (12 Years A Slave)


BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Sally Hawkins (Blue Jasmine)

BEST BRITISH FILM
The World’s End

BEST ACTRESS

Emma Thompson (Saving Mr. Banks)


Jameson BEST ACTOR

James McAvoy (Filth)


BEST DIRECTOR
Alfonso Cuarón (Gravity)

BEST FILM
Gravity 


 

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