Emmy Nominations 2015

16 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

2015 Emmy nominations FAQ: Where to watch the announcement.

Race horses and athletes are often grouped intro strong starters and good finishers and the same distinction can be seen among legendary American TV series – at least if taking home trophies from the Emmy awards is regarded as the finishing line. WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif. (AP) — The TV drama series “Empire” and “Mad Men” and the sitcom “black-ish” are among the contenders for Thursday’s Emmy nominations.Emmy nominations arrive Thursday morning, so it’s high time to gather The Envelope’s Buzzmeter panelists — USA Today’s Robert Bianco, TV Guide’s Matt Roush, Entertainment Weekly’s Melissa Maerz, the Los Angeles Times’ Mary McNamara and Glenn Whipp, and Gold Derby’s Tom O’Neil — to discuss this year’s most intriguing races. Mad Men stormed out of the gates, taking the Emmy for outstanding drama series in each of its first four seasons, amid several other prizes, but has failed to convert any of its nominations into gongs in the past three years.

In the first of two parts, the group debated the dominance of “Modern Family,” made a case for some comedy newcomers and offered Television Academy voters some advice on breaking bad habits. So one of the main areas of interest when the 2015 Emmy awards are handed out is whether the advertising industry series – which will surely receive several shortlistings for its final season – can make it to the podium and end with a flourish. Nominees in top categories are to be announced Thursday morning by Uzo Aduba, an Emmy winner last year for her “Orange is the New Black” role as Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren, and “So You Think You Can Dance” host Cat Deeley. In Part 2 they discuss “Empire’s” place in the Emmys, stump for some favorite performers and reveal which departing show they think should win the most love from voters.

With the depth of African-American talent among actresses starring in drama series, it’s possible that one of them could become the first to win in the category — among the few Emmy acting awards still solely in white hands. Not necessarily, though both have a pretty good shot — Aduba won Guest Actress in a Comedy last year, while Deeley is a perennial nominee in the Reality Show Host category.

McNamara: Tatiana Maslany and “Orphan Black.” Also Michael Kitchen and “Foyles War,” which has entered the race for the first and possibly (hope springs eternal Anthony Horowitz!) last time. Henson, who plays an unyielding matriarch in the hip-hop family drama “Empire,” Viola Davis as a cutthroat attorney in “How to Get Away with Murder” and previously twice-nominated Kerry Washington as a D.C. powerbroker in “Scandal.” The expansive ethnic diversity that TV offers, relative to theatrical releases, also is in play when it comes to sexuality. But you can choose which shows and actors you think should be nominated in these top categories now (below is an unscientific survey of shows and actors that could get nominated, but others might make the cut).

The Sopranos was also more honoured for its later and final series, and the belated acclaim for these two shows may be explained by the fact that they had daringly unsympathetic central characters (both gangsters of a kind) who needed time to grow on the voters. The question of whether Mad Men will be given a gold-plated send-off touches on the question of whether awards are best used to recognise originality or to honour longevity. And this being the “year of Sue,” her graduation year, the wonderful Sher made the most of it — up to the finale, when she realized that her classmates actually knew who she was and really liked her.

In addition to this difficulty in separating long-runners from newcomers, award panels also have the broader problem of adjudicating who contributed what to a successful production. Whipp: In trying to figure out why Nick Offerman has never been nominated for bringing to life man’s man icon Ron Swanson on “Parks and Recreation,” the only reason I could possibly imagine is that he never had an episode fully devoted to his character. “Parks” was always a team operation. So whatever episode Offerman submitted to voters would have moments of comic brilliance, but apparently not enough to convince quantity-over-quality-minded voters that he was worthy of saluting. In most cases, a hit will come from combined excellence in all these areas but – with prizes available for so many different aspects – jurors are sometimes encouraged to split the ticket between various worthy winners: singling out the script in this, the acting in that, the look of the other. Another key aspect of TV’s evolution likely to be reflected in the nominations: The rising tide of non-broadcast and cable platforms, including streaming services, which has made shows including Netflix’s “House of Cards” and Amazon’s “Transparent” serious contenders.

But this season, “Parks'” last, contains a beautiful episode in which Ron and Amy Poehler’s Leslie work through their ongoing feud in a way that’s funny and beautiful and damn near poetic. Simon Russell Beale once joked, after taking a best actor award in a new play that didn’t even win a nomination for its writer or director, that he had obviously somehow managed to give a good performance in a play that was badly written and incompetently staged. Similarly, a TV historian noting that Bryan Cranston was chosen as best actor for Breaking Bad three times running from 2008-10 but then not again until the finale in 2014 might conclude that he phoned in his performance for half of the seasons before getting his act together again for the closing episodes.

David Letterman, who retired from “Late Show,” and Stephen Colbert, who left “The Colbert Report” to succeed Letterman this fall, also are in the Emmy hunt for their former shows. “Late Show” was last nominated in 2009 as best variety, music or comedy series and last won in 2002. Was Don’s Coca-Cola campaign the ultimate sign that he’s so cynical, he can’t have a single authentic experience that he won’t use as an excuse to sell something? In reality, his acting probably came to be taken for granted – or was regarded as too obvious a choice – before a feeling that his achievement across the whole series should be noticed. Jon Hamm may hope for a similar response to his final hours as Don Draper, and the encountering of recent personal difficulties may not harm his chances. They’re both getting a break: the TV academy split the variety series category into two, one for variety talk shows and one for variety or sketch series like “Saturday Night Live,” making space for more contenders in each.

In the case of the Emmys, though, even more precise distinctions are required than on other panels because – unlike many other TV prizes, including the Baftas – nominations relate to specific episodes, with actors and writers (due to the American TV fashion of using multiple scripting teams) being entered for specific storylines. The change to a theater in West Hollywood also moved the traditional pre-dawn back by several hours, making it unavailable to network morning shows that typically aired it.

This year, with Mad Men in the writing and performing sections, Hamm and Weiner may get a lift from the extra emotions surrounding Person to Person, the last episode, but in another category, the concentration on specific scripts may harm the show’s hopes in the main. Roush: “Mad Men” did improve considerably (though still uneven) in the back half of its final year, but no show had a more enjoyable and satisfying final season than the perennially under-appreciated “Justified” — going back to its Harlan County roots in the end, with deliciously stellar work from Timothy Olyphant, Walton Goggins, Joelle Carter and the magnificent Sam Elliott.

And as the members of its awesome-sauce ensemble keep honing and discovering their individual voices, their success will continue to send audiences back to the home of their collective glory. Henson’s fabulous breakout character of Cookie would be most welcome, but given the relative strength of the overcrowded drama field these days, it’s hard to make an argument for this sort of guilty pleasure to be the best in its category (when shows like “The Americans” and “The Good Wife” fail even to make the cut season after excellent season).

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