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Russia's 'Leviathan' Golden Globes Winner for Best Foreign Language Film

Producer Alexander Rodnyansky (L) and director Andrei Zvyagintsev pose backstage with their award for Best Foreign Language Film for their film "Leviathan" at the 72nd Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California on Jan. 11, 2015.

Controversial Russian film "Leviathan" has been awarded the Golden Globe for best foreign language film at a star-studded ceremony in the U.S.

The Russian-made film beat off competition from Poland, Sweden, Israel and Estonia to triumph at the 72nd Golden Globe Awards, held Sunday night in Beverly Hills.

Directed by Andrei Zvyagintsev, "Leviathan" tells the story of a provincial man who endeavors to keep his property safe from a corrupt mayor.

It initially struggled to get a screening permit in Russia after falling foul of a law that bans swearing in films, but was eventually given a +18 rating by the Culture Ministry, which bleeped out the expletives.

"Leviathan" is the first Russian film to pick up the award for best foreign language film since Sergei Bondarchuk's "War and Peace" in 1968.

Other notable winners on Sunday night included Britain's Eddie Redmayne, who was awarded the best actor award, and U.S. star Julianne Moore, who picked up the best actress gong.

U.S. director Richard Linklater's coming-of-age movie "Boyhood" picked up three awards for best film drama, best director and best supporting actress.

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