Beverly Hills, Calif. The cowboy romance "Brokeback Mountain" led the Golden Globes on Monday with four prizes, including best dramatic film and the directing honor for Ang Lee.
It was a triumphant night for films dealing with homosexuality and transsexuality. Along with the victories for "Brokeback Mountain," acting honors went to Felicity Huffman in a gender-bending role as a man preparing for sex-change surgery in "Transamerica" and Philip Seymour Hoffman as gay author Truman Capote in "Capote."
"I know as actors our job is usually to shed our skins, but I think as people our job is to become who we really are and so I would like to salute the men and women who brave ostracism, alienation and a life lived on the margins to become who they really are," Huffman said.
The Johnny Cash biography "Walk the Line" won the Globe for best musical or comedy film and earned acting honors for stars Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon.
Director Lee's "Brokeback Mountain," the story of two family men concealing their affair, has emerged as a front-runner for the Oscars.
Oscar nominations come out Jan. 31, with the awards presented March 5.
"Brokeback Mountain" also won for best screenplay and song, "A Love That Will Never Grow Old."
Phoenix and Witherspoon won for best actor and actress in a movie musical or comedy for the biopic that follows Cash's career and his courtship with the love of his life, June Carter.
George Clooney won the supporting-actor Globe for the oil-industry thriller "Syriana" and Rachel Weisz earned the supporting-actress prize for the murder thriller "The Constant Gardener."
"Brokeback Mountain" won the screenplay award for Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana.
Television winners included Geena Davis for best drama series actress as the U.S. president in "Commander in Chief," Hugh Laurie for drama series actor as a cranky, pill-popping doctor in "House," Steve Carell for best comedy series actor as an incompetent boss in "The Office," Jonathan Rhys Meyers for miniseries or movie actor as Elvis Presley in "Elvis," and S. Epatha Merkerson for miniseries or movie actress as a boarding house proprietor who takes in an outcast teen in "Lackawanna Blues."
Mary-Louise Parker of "Weeds" beat out the four lead actresses of "Desperate Housewives" for best actress in a comedy series. But "Desperate Housewives" did win for best musical or comedy series.
The Globes are awarded by the relatively small Hollywood Foreign Press Assn., which has about 80 members, compared with the 5,800 film professionals eligible to vote for the Oscars.
Still, the Globes have an excellent track record at predicting the Oscars.