8 JANUARY 2008

Best actress nominee Keira Knightley won't be taking to the red carpet in LA next Sunday, after it was announced the annual Golden Globes ceremony at the Beverly Hilton has been cancelled. After the Screen Actors Guild pledged its members would not cross Writers Guild of America picket lines, one of the biggest awards nights of the year was effectively left without any stars.

Instead of the usual glamorous three-hour gala, the Globe winners will simply be announced in an press conference broadcast on Sunday. "We are all very disappointed that our traditional awards ceremony will not take place this year and that millions of viewers worldwide will be deprived of seeing many of their favourite stars celebrating 2007's outstanding achievements in motion pictures and television," said Hollywood Foreign Press Association president Jorge Camara.

As the news broke many of the big studios cancelled their extravagant parties, including Universal and Warner Bros. It is expected Fox Searchlight and Weinstein Company will follow suit.

It means not just Keira, who was nominated for her role in Atonement, but other British stars including Ricky Gervais and Julie Christie will miss out on the celebrity- studded celebrations if they win.

The decision to cancel the gala, which usually draws in a worldwide audience of 250 million, has put a big question mark over the Oscars, due to be held next month. It follows weeks of strikes by Hollywood's writers over DVD royalties.

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Keira, pictured at the 2006 Globes ceremony, will miss out on her moment of glory if she scoops the best actress gong on Sunday, after it emerged winners will simply be announced at a press conference. Nominees decided to boycott the ceremony in support of the Writers Guild Of AmericaPhoto: © Getty Images
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The major studios have cancelled their traditional extravagant parties where stars like Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie and Mark Wahlberg let their hair down last yearPhoto: © Getty Images
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The decision not to go ahead with the annual ceremony follows weeks of strikes by writers over DVD royaltiesPhoto: © Getty Images
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