NY film critics name 'United 93' as best picture

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"United 93," a tense drama focusing on one of the hijacked planes used in the Sept. 11 attacks, won the best picture prize on Monday in the New York Film Critics Circle Awards.

Helen Mirren took out the best actress honor for her role as ruling Queen Elizabeth II in "The Queen," while Forest Whitaker won best actor for his portrayal of Ugandan dictator Idi Amin in "The Last King of Scotland."

The awards, voted on by New York film critics, are among the early major awards at the start of the Oscar season. The results put Mirren and Whitaker as early front-runners to win film's top honors at the Academy Awards in February after two other award wins in the past week.

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