No picket at the Globes press conference

After discussions with NBC, Hollywood Foreign Press Association President Jorge Camara announced Jan. 11, 2008, that the HFPA will have complete control of its 65th Annual Golden Globe Awards Announcement that is scheduled to take place Sunday in the International Ballroom of The Beverly Hilton. (Charley Gallay / Getty Images)

"Atonement," the epic romantic drama of redemption, won the 65th annual Golden Globe for best motion picture, drama, Sunday evening, capping off a night overshadowed by the crippling Writers Guild strike.

The strike forced the cancellation of the usually star-studded awards ceremony that was to be telecast on NBC. It was replaced by a press conference, where TV reporters who specialize in celebrity news -- such as Mary Hart from "Entertainment Tonight" -- announced the winners.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. president Jorge Camara, after announcing the final honor, promised that next year, "The Golden Globes will be back, bigger and better than ever."

"Atonement" led the pack going into the evening with seven Golden Globe nominations but had been largely ignored this awards season by other critics groups as well as the Screen Actors Guild awards. It also won best original score.

Veteran Julie Christie won best actress in a motion picture, drama, for her role as a woman suffering from Alzheimers in "Away From Her." Daniel Day-Lewis picked up a Golden Globe for best actor in a dramatic motion picture as a greedy oil tycoon in "There Will be Blood."

Johnny Depp, always the bridesmaid but never the bride, finally got his Golden Globe, winning best actor in a movie musical or comedy for his role as the vengeful "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street."

The grisly musical, directed by Tim Burton, also picked up a Golden Globe for best motion picture, comedy or musical.

Also earning two Golden Globes was "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly," the poignant story of a high-flying magazine editor felled by a devastating stroke. It won best foreign language film and best director for Julian Schnabel.

The gritty Western "No Country for Old Men" scored two wins, best screenplay for brothers Joel and Ethan Coen and supporting actor for Javier Bardem's turn as a cold-blooded assassin.

Best supporting actress in a motion picture went to Cate Blanchett for her audacious turn as a Bob Dylan-esque singer in "I'm Not There."

The awards got underway in a flurry of announcements and confusion with top honors going to Glenn Close for best actress in a TV drama for "Damages," "Ratatouille" for best animated film, Jon Hamm for best actor in a TV series, drama, for "Mad Men," Marion Cotillard for best actress in a motion picture musical or comedy for "La Vie en Rose," and Samantha Morton for best supporting actress in a series, miniseries or TV movie for "Longford." The latter also won for best miniseries or motion picture made for TV and for its star, Jim Broadbent, best actor in a miniseries or motion picture for TV.

Queen Latifah won for best actress in a miniseries or TV movie for "Life Support." Jeremy Piven won best supporting actor in a miniseries or TV movie for "Entourage."

Other winners: "Mad Men" for best TV drama, David Duchovny for best actor in a TV series comedy or musical for "Californication," best TV series musical or comedy for "Extras," Tina Fey for best actress in a TV series musical or comedy for "30 Rock," best original score for "Atonement," and best original song for "Guaranteed" from "Into the Wild."

susan.king@latimes.com