HBO Leads the Cable Pack in Award Nominations

A Billy Joel concert in the Soviet Union, a dramatization of the life of African National Congress leader Nelson Mandela, an election year takeoff called "Tanner '88" and a probing look at Vietnam in the dramatic series "Vietnam War Story" helped make HBO the leader in the 10th annual ACE Awards nominations, announced Wednesday by the National Academy of Cable Programming.

ACE Award winners for outstanding cable programming in comedy, drama, variety, sports and documentary fields will be revealed in a live Jan. 15 special scheduled to air simultaneously on 10 of the largest cable channels. The show will originate from the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles.

Non-televised awards will be handed out Jan. 14 at the Beverly Wilshire.

HBO's 114 nominations (out of 342 in 76 categories) made it the clear leader, followed by Arts and Entertainment's 32 and Showtime's 23. Also in the top 10 were CNN (20), The Disney Channel (18), USA Network (15), Discovery (14), Superstation TBS (13), ESPN (12) and Bravo (11).

Here are some nominations:

MUSIC SPECIAL: "From Motown to Your Town" (MTV); "Bruce Springsteen Special: Inside the Tunnel of Love" (MTV); "The Second Annual Prince's Trust All Star Rock Concert" (HBO); "HBO World Stage: From Leningrad, USSR" (HBO); "Motown on Showtime: Michael Jackson . . . The Legend Continues" (Showtime).

MUSIC SERIES: "New Visions" (VH-1); "New Country" (Nashville); "Grand Ole Opry Live" (Nashville); "Wired" (USA); "Cinemax Sessions" (Cinemax).

COMEDY SPECIAL: "On Location: The Roseanne Barr Show" (HBO); "On Location: Dennis Miller: Mr. Miller Goes To Washington" (HBO); "Cinemax Comedy Experiment: Merrill Markoe's Guide to Glamorous Living" (Cinemax); "Elayne Boosler: Broadway Baby" (Showtime).

COMEDY SERIES: "Not Necessarily The News" (HBO); "HBO Comedy Hour Live" (HBO); "It's Garry Shandling's Show" (Showtime); "Blackadder The Third" (A&E;); "Yes, Prime Minister" (A&E;).

DRAMATIC SERIES: "Ray Bradbury Theatre" (USA); "Tanner '88" (HBO); "Vietnam War Story" (HBO).

MOVIE OR MINISERIES: "The Man Who Broke 1,000 Chains" (HBO); "Mandela" (HBO); "Jean Shepherd's Ollie Hopnoodle's Haven of Bliss" (Disney); "After Pilkington" (A&E;); "The Race For The Double Helix" (A&E;).

CULTURAL / PERFORMING ARTS SPECIAL OR SERIES: "Ballerina" (A&E;); "The Theban Plays: Antigone" (A&E;); "Slatkin! A Symphony" (A&E;); "Onegin" (Bravo); "Portrait of America: New York City" (TBS).

DOCUMENTARY SERIES: "America Undercover" (HBO); "Hollywood--The Golden Years" (A&E;); "A&E; Journeys: Footsteps" (A&E;); "National Geographic Explorer" (TBS); "Oceans: The Last Frontier" (CBN).

DOCUMENTARY SPECIAL: "Dying For Love" (Lifetime); "Once Upon Her Time" (Lifetime); "Dear America: Letters Home From Vietnam" (HBO); "Lands of the Living Totems" (TBS); "A Painful Reminder" (Discovery).

EDUCATIONAL / INSTRUCTIONAL SERIES: "Psychologist Dr. Jeffrey Marsh" (Movietime); "Held In Trust" (Discovery); "The Nature of Things" (Discovery); "Wildlife Chronicles" (Discovery); "Science and Technology Week" (CNN).

EDUCATIONAL / INSTRUCTIONAL SPECIAL: "Portraits of Anorexia" (Discovery); "AIDS: Everything You and Your Family Need to Know . . . But Were Afraid to Ask" (HBO); "Warning: Food May Be Hazardous to Your Health" (HBO); "Science on Ice: Research in Antarctica" (CNN).

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