Beloved English actress Helen Mirren, whose work most recently involved shooting people with a variety of different weapons in the action films Red and Red 2, has been an acclaimed performer in England and America for years. But her first Emmy win came in 1996 when she took home the statue for her turn as Jane Tennison in the acclaimed British police drama Prime Suspect.
Prime Suspect starred Mirren as a tough-as-nails, no nonsense police detective working in the male-dominated Scotland Yard. Every season, or series as they are called across the pond, focused on a different case. While she was nominated for Prime Suspect series 2 and 3, it was Prime Suspect: Scent of Darkness for which she was finally given the award.
Mirren said at the beginning of the ceremony that she was sure she wouldn't win, because she had been put in "the loser's corner."
"I thought I was in the loser's corner, I must say. I was in the corner where all the camera crew kept climbing over my knees, and I thought 'Oh, they don't put winners in this seat.'"
But not only did Mirren win the award in 1996, she won it again in 1999 for her performance in The Passion of Ayn Rand, in 2006 for her role in the miniseries Elizabeth I, and finally in 2007, she returned to the police procedural she made famous for another win, this time in Prime Suspect 7: The Final Act.