By Stephen M. Silverman
Updated April 12, 2002 10:57 AM

Positive portrayals of women and women’s issues brought home the bacon for HBO’s drama of a dying woman, “Wit,” and for the premium cable network’s popular series, “Sex and the City” and “Six Feet Under,” as well as for NBC’s “Today” and “The West Wing” at the 27th annual Gracie Allen Awards in New York on Wednesday night, says the Hollywood Reporter. Grand award winners included “Today” show correspondent Jamie Gangel; “Entertainment Tonight” co-anchor Mary Hart; “60 Minutes II” correspondent Carol Marin; CNN anchor Paula Zahn; and actress Emma Thompson, who starred in the HBO original movie “Wit.” (HBO, like PEOPLE, is part of AOL Time Warner.) Beloved comedienne Gracie Allen (1902-64) perfected a “dumb Dora” comedy routine with her husband, George Burns, that successfully took her through vaudeville, radio, movies and early TV. Joan Rivers hosted the awards ceremony that bears Allen’s name, and the event itself is held annually by the American Women in Radio and Television Foundation. Other Gracie winners Wednesday night included Court TV anchor Catherine Crier and Ricki Lake for the public service announcement “Prevention of Teen Pregnancy.”