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PEOPLE IN BRIEF: Leno gets support from his staff

Leno gets support from his staff

LOS ANGELES -- Jay Leno staffers said their boss isn't the bad guy in NBC's late-night upheaval.

Leno has faced online chatter and some reports suggesting he's wresting ''Tonight'' from Conan O'Brien.

''The network asked him to make a compromise. He's being a good soldier, and he's being trashed,'' said producer Jack Coen, who has worked with Leno for 14 years.

He added that there isn't any truth to the suggestion that the talk host forced the issue to get back on ''The Tonight Show.''

'Avatar' wins top drama at Golden Globes

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. -- The Golden Globes gave top honors to James Cameron's ''Avatar'' and took its cue from the film's celebration of humanity, with winners ranging from the gritty child-abuse drama ''Precious'' to freewheeling comedy ''The Hangover.''

Sunday's awards ceremony also opened wide to embrace the long-admired Jeff Bridges, who took best dramatic-acting honors for the country-music film ''Crazy Heart,'' and a sitcom actress, Mo'Nique, who emerged as a fierce screen presence in ''Precious.''

Fox's spunky new TV musical comedy series ''Glee'' was honored, while the best TV drama award went to AMC's 1960s Madison Avenue saga ''Mad Men'' for the third year in a row.

Stead, Pinkney awarded for children's books

NEW YORK -- Rebecca Stead's ''When You Reach Me'' and Jerry Pinkney's ''The Lion and the Mouse'' have received the top prizes in children's literature.

Stead's intricate, time-traveling narrative set in 1970s Manhattan, inspired in part by ''A Wrinkle in Time,'' won the John Newbery Medal for best children's book. The Randolph Caldecott prize for picture book was given to Pinkney's wordless telling of the classic Aesop fable.

The awards were announced Monday in Boston at the American Library Association's annual midwinter meeting.