Sure da Bears, da Bulls and da Cubs stink, but Renée Zellweger and Richard Gere gave the Windy City some serious bragging rights Sunday night, helping propel Chicago to a championship at the 60th Golden Globes.
The toe-tapping, murder-minded musical, which came in with a leading eight nominations, razzle-dazzled its way to a sweep of the Motion Picture, Musical/Comedy categories: Best Picture, Best Actress (Zellweger) and Best Actor (Gere).
Despite Chicago's big wins, the Globes failed to unmuddle the Oscar field, with several films picking up key statuettes.
The time-hopping Virginia Woolf-inspired The Hours was named Best Motion Picture Drama, and star Nicole Kidman (and her fake Woolfian schnoz) beat out her costars Meryl Streep and Julianne Moore (nominated in the category for her role in Far from Heaven) for the Best Actress, Drama statuette.
Streep took consolation in her Globe for Best Supporting Actress for Adaptation. The quirky comedy swept the supporting categories: Chris Cooper won on the actor side.
About Schmidt's Jack Nicholson was named Best Actor, Drama ("We all thought it was a comedy," he cracked), and the film's screenwriters, Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor, won for their script about a recently widowed retiree who finds himself while trying to rescue his daughter from marrying her mullet-headed fiancé.
Gangs of New York also doubled its pleasure, with wins for Best Director (Martin Scorsese) and Best Song, U2's "The Hands That Built America." (While giving his acceptance speech for the latter win, Bono made like Ozzy and let loose an unbleeped F-bomb.)
On the tube side, cable dominated. FX's The Shield was named Best Drama Series and star Michael Chiklis added a Globe to go with his Emmy. HBO's Curb Your Enthusiasm was named Best Comedy Series; its award was accepted by show mastermind and star Larry David, who got our award for best speech.
"This is a sad day for the Golden Globes," said David upon collecting his trophy. "This is, however, a good day for Larry David. I suspect the wife will be a little forthcoming tonight...Thank you Foreign Press for what should be a rewarding evening."
A couple of walking wounded were golden in the actress categories, with The Sopranos' Edie Falco (laryngitis) collecting in the drama category and Friends' Jennifer Aniston (broken toe) in the comedy race. Aniston was the only tube winner representing a broadcast network, unless you count Tony Shalhoub, who was named Best Actor, Comedy for his role as a neurotic P.I. in Monk, a USA Network show coopted by ABC.
HBO was the big winner in the Miniseries/TV movie category, with The Gathering Storm winning for Best Miniseries/TV movie, star Albert Finney won Actor in a Miniseries/TV Movie and Uma Thurman won Actress in a Miniseries/TV Movie for the cable net's Hysterical Blindness.
Maybe NBC should demand a recount in its just completed big-bucks negotiations to re-up The West Wing for two more seasons. The Oval Office drama was the night's biggest diss, going 0-for-5.
Finally, Gene Hackman added the Cecil B. DeMille Award (for "outstanding contribution to the entertainment field") to a mantel that already includes two Oscars and three Globes.
Perhaps the best highlight of the evening: The awards show actually finished on time, clocking in at just under three hours, leaving everybody plenty of time for the after-parties.
Complete list of winners