LOS ANGELES - Aaron Sorkin's "West Wing" was the biggest winner, but one of the most prestigious awards last night at the 16th Annual Television Critics Association Awards ceremony here went to HBO's "The Corner."
"The Corner," which was filmed in Baltimore and told the story of a family struggling to escape drug addiction, won the award as Best Movie or Mini-Series.
It was based on a nonfiction book of the same title by David Simon and Edward Burns.
Simon co-wrote and co-produced the miniseries with David Mills. Charles S. Dutton directed.
"I'm very grateful to the critics on this one," Simon said. "This show is not going to break out the way it did and get the attention it did without a lot of critics sitting up and noticing that something different was happening on their TV screens.
"This is a case where the critics really helped put the show over. They told people to watch, and people did. And what the audience saw was a very different story than the ones usually told on TV.
"That's pretty cool," he added.
In ceremonies held at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Pasadena, "West Wing," NBC's White House drama, won three awards: New Program of the Year, Drama Series of the Year, and Program of the Year.
The Fox sitcom "Malcolm in the Middle" was honored as Comedy of the Year, with Jane Kaczmarek winning the award for Best Comedy Performer.
The award for Best Drama Performer went to James Gandolfini of HBO's "Sopranos."
PBS's book-friendly kids' show ""Between the Lions" was honored as Children's Show of the Year.
The group of 150 television critics and reporters also gave a Career Achievement Award last night to Dick Van Dyke.