'Cristina' Upsets 'Judy' to Win First Court Emmy

Twentieth Television's Cristina's Court wins first-ever award for legal/courtroom show; ABC cleans up among networks

Upsets were the rule of the night at the 35th annual Daytime Emmys on Friday evening, held at Los Angeles’ Hollywood and Highland Entertainment Complex, with Twentieth Television’s Cristina’s Court winning the first-ever award for Outstanding Legal/Courtroom Show.

Meanwhile, ABC led all networks with 14 total awards.

Cristina’s Court, a show that Twentieth developed for U.S. television off of Spanish-language Telemundo, took the prize over the much–higher-rated and longer-running Judge Judy, which has led the court pack for since the show’s premiere in 1996.

Ellen DeGeneres managed to four-repeat as Outstanding Talk Show Host, a prize she has won four out of five times since her show premiered in 2003. While DeGeneres was named best host, CBS’ Rachael Ray took home the prize for Outstanding Talk Show, an award Warner Bros.’ The Ellen DeGeneres Show had won for the previous four years in a row. And Warner Bros.’ Tyra Banks beat out CBS’ much–higher-rated Dr. Phil as top informational talk show, another new category for the Daytime Emmys.

CBS’ The Oprah Winfrey Show was not in the mix. Winfrey has taken herself and her show out of contention in 1999 after sweeping the awards for several years running.

The upsets may have been the result of changes made in the voting system this year. Previously, the entire membership of the National Association of Television Arts and Sciences selected nominees off an overall list, with a blue-ribbon panel deciding the winner out of the group of category nominees. This year, shows sent in episodes and a panel of about 20 member-voters selected the nominees and the winners after viewing those episodes.

In other awards, Regis Philbin of ABC’s Live with Regis and Kelly was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award for spending more than 40 successful years in television broadcasting. And ABC’s General Hospital took home the trophy for best daytime drama, with Anthony Geary winning best actor honors for playing Luke Spencer. Jeanne Cooper of CBS’ The Young and theRestless was named best actress.

For a complete list of winners, click here.