The unlikely duo of Michael Moore and Mel Gibson shared the spotlight at the 31st People’s Choice Awards on Sunday night. Moore’s controversial “Fahrenheit 9/11″ was named Favorite Movie and Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ” took home the Favorite Movie Drama award in the annual fan-driven contest.
Moore, eschewing his baseball-hat-and-baggy-jeans look for a suit and stylish specs, took another opportunity to stir the pot. “This country is still all of ours, not right or left or Democrat or Republican,” he said while accepting the award, which he dedicated to the soldiers fighting in Iraq.
“To me, really, this is the ultimate goal, because one doesn’t make work for the elite,” Gibson told reporters backstage. “To me, the people have spoken.”
Both films have been virtually shut out of the nominations for many film competitions leading up to the Oscars (which include the National Society of Film Critics Awards, the Critics’ Choice Awards and several others), and neither could match the performance of “Shrek 2,” which took five awards. The blockbuster animated sequel scooped up awards for Favorite Movie Comedy, Favorite Animated Movie, Favorite Sequel, Favorite Animated Movie Star (the Eddie Murphy-voiced Donkey) and Favorite Villain Movie Star (Jennifer Saunders’ Fairy Godmother).
With the notable absence of Grammy golden boy Kanye West, the musical categories feature many familiar names. U2 won Favorite Group, Alicia Keys took Favorite Female Singer and Usher Favorite Male Singer; Usher also shared the Favorite Combined Forces award with Lil Jon for “Yeah!”
In the television field, “American Idol” snared the prize for Favorite Reality Show/Competition, and Nick and Jessica smiled for the cameras as they won the Favorite Reality Show/Other award for “Newlyweds.”
Though radiant, Jessica’s chompers were outshined by Julia Roberts, who won the Favorite Female Movie Star and the Crest toothpaste-sponsored Favorite Smile awards. Other branded nods went to “Alias” star Jennifer Garner for Pantene’s Favorite Hair and Kate Hudson for Cover Girl’s Favorite Look.
Johnny Depp was named Favorite Male Movie Star, not to be confused with Brad Pitt, who was named Favorite Leading Man. Leading lady honors went to Renée Zellweger, while Angelina Jolie was dubbed Favorite Female Action Movie Star, with Will Smith taking the male category. Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler shared the Favorite On-Screen Chemistry award for their roles in “50 First Dates.”
Jason Alexander and Malcolm-Jamal Warner hosted the ceremony, which took place at the Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California. The awards covered 38 film, television and music categories.
The nominations were determined by editors at Entertainment Weekly magazine, the People’s Choice production team and a panel of pop culture fans. For the first time in the organization’s history, all winners were determined by Internet voting, which topped more than 21 million votes.
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