Ben Affleck’s Iran hostage drama Argo and musical Les Miserables were the big winners on Sunday at the Golden Globes.Affleck won both best dramatic film and director for his movie about a CIA mission to rescue diplomats in Tehran in 1979, while Les Miserables won best film, actor and supporting actress in the musical/comedy category.

As expected Daniel Day-Lewis won best drama actor for his portrayal of Abraham Lincoln, but that was the only top award for Spielberg’s film, which had topped the nominations tally with seven at the 70th annual Globe awards.

Surprise

And favourite Jessica Chastain meanwhile won best drama actress as a relentless CIA agent tracking down Osama bin Laden in Kathryn Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty while Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained won two key prizes.

But the night, to the surprise of some, belonged to Affleck, who took the top two prizes. The actor-director, who plays a CIA agent who rescues six U.S. diplomats from the Canadian ambassador’s residence in Tehran in 1979, paid tribute to real-life agents and diplomats, including Tony Mendez, the actual character he played.

It was a vindication of sorts for Affleck, who was snubbed in the Oscar nominations announced last week, failing to win a best director nod.

Meanwhile Les Miserables , a musical adapted from the Victor Hugo book, won best musical/comedy movie, and Australian Hugh Jackman won best actor for his all-singing role, and co-star Anne Hathaway won best supporting actress.

Hathaway won for her portrayal of the young mother and prostitute Fantine, beating fellow nominees Amy Adams in The Master ; Sally Field in Lincoln ; Helen Hunt in The Sessions and Nicole Kidman in The Paperboy .

Former President Bill Clinton provided one of the biggest surprises of the night, taking the stage to pay tribute to Spielberg’s movie and to the iconic 16th U.S. President.

“A tough fight to push a bill through a bitterly divided House of Representatives — winning it required the President to make a lot of unsavoury deals ... I wouldn’t know anything about that,” he quipped.

Blood-soaked spaghetti

Tarantino’s blood-soaked spaghetti Western tribute Django Unchained meanwhile won two Globes: best supporting actor for Austrian Christoph Waltz, and best screenplay for the Pulp Fiction director himself.

“This is a damn surprise, and I’m happy to be surprised,” said Tarantino, whose film tells the story of a freed slave (Jamie Foxx) who teams up with a dentist-turned-bounty-hunter a few years before the American Civil War.

British songstress Adele, making her first red carpet appearance since giving birth in October, won best song for the theme tune from James Bond blockbuster Skyfall .

Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence won best musical/comedy actress for rom-com Silver Linings Playbook , while best original score went to Ang Lee’s Life of Pi . Scottish-themed Brave won best animated feature.

Best foreign language film went to Austrian Michael Haneke’s Amour , which won the Cannes Palme d’Or (Golden Palm) last year. — AFP