Athena Chu Yan may have lost the International Emmy best actress award to Julie Walters yesterday, but was described as the 'pride of Hong Kong' while staying true to her Chinese roots in a cheongsam. British actress Julie Walters, who did not attend the awards ceremony in New York, won for her portrayal of the late Northern Ireland Secretary Mo Mowlam, who fought for peace as she died of cancer, in the Channel 4 biopic Mo. Chu was nominated for her role as a wheelchair-bound designer in a drama series produced by RTHK and the Labour and Welfare Bureau. Out of the four nominees for best actress, only Chu and Brazilian nominee Adriana Esteves attended. 'This meant Chu got lots of attention and she was among those who spent the longest time on the red carpet,' said director Ha Kwai-cheong. He created the episode in which Chu starred, A Wall-less World, and attended the ceremony. Ha said: 'She exuded so much grace tonight and was very composed when fielding questions from the international press. She is truly Hong Kong's pride.' The executive producer of A Wall-less World, Rita Chan Man-yee, said: 'I feel like we have already won. Our competitors, especially from Britain, were very strong and our budget compared to theirs is miniscule, so they deserved the award. And since the theme of our series is the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the nomination is the best platform for us to deliver our international message.' Chan added: 'Chu's nomination is a great encouragement to her peers in Hong Kong. It shows that if you work hard and have passion, one day you will receive the acknowledgement that you deserve.' Ha said he hopes the nomination will encourage more funding dedicated towards developing high-quality dramas on Hong Kong television, which lags behind the film industry.