Some things just don’t seem to change at Emmy season. This time around, HBO once again led all networks in total nominations with 81 while such critical darlings s “Mad Men” and “Modern Family” held firm in their ability to win over Emmy consideration.
But a handful of freshman programs also rocked the boards. Bizarro drama “American Horror Story” went toe-to-toe with “Mad Men” for Emmy supremacy, “Hatfields & McCoys” thunderously announced the entrance of History as a serious player in top-notch original content while “Hemingway & Gellhorn” joined a long tradition of HBO projects overflowing with noms.
Here’s a look at the top 20 networks that earned Emmy nominations.
“Paul Simon’s Graceland Journey: Under African Skies” received some Emmy love for its sound mixing and editing as well as for top nonfiction special. Meanwhile, jailbird skein “Beyond Scared Straight” got a nomination for picture editing for nonfiction programming.
ABC got a small boost in total Emmy nods from last year’s 40, with “Modern Family” unsurprisingly leading the way with 14. On top of that, all of last year’s nominated stars — Ty Burrell, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Eric Stonestreet and Ed O’Neill as well as Julie Bowen and Sofia Vergara — brought home supporting actor nods. “Dancing With the Stars” also snagged seven noms, including reality-competition program.
Anchored by two powerhouse shows that drew in a combined 30 noms, AMC again reigned supreme as the top basic cable net at the Emmys with an all-time network high of 34 nominations. “Breaking Bad” garnered 13 nominations, with nods for drama series and individual kudos for Bryan Cranston, Anna Gunn and Aaron Paul, among others. “Mad Men” one-upped that with 17 nods, including drama. “The Walking Dead” and “Hell on Wheels” added the final four.
With a strong sophomore season of four installments, crime thriller “Luther” grabbed four nods: for top mini-movie and for writing, directing and lead actor (Idris Elba) in that realm. Newsroom drama “The Hour” also earned a nod for writing.
“Top Chef,” “Kathy Griffin: Tired Hooker” and “Inside the Actor’s Studio” helped Bravo match the same number of Emmy noms as last year. “Top Chef” again led the way with three nods, including two for cinematography and picture editing and one for reality-competition program.
Cartoon Network drew in noms with a few of its eclectic shows, with a heavy emphasis on the short-format animated program award: “Robot Chicken,” “Regular Show,” “MAD” and hipster favorite “Adventure Time” all earned nods in that category. “Children’s Hospital” also received a nomination for special class short-format live entertainment program, and “The Looney Tunes Show” earned a nod for voiceover.
“The Good Wife” and “The Amazing Race” led all CBS shows in Emmy nods with seven apiece, while a slew of actors garnered individual nominations. Jon Cryer (“Two and a Half Men”) and Jim Parsons (“The Big Bang Theory”) both received noms for lead actor in a comedy series, Melissa McCarthy (“Mike & Molly”) snagged a nom for lead actress in a comedy series and Julianna Margulies of “The Good Wife” earned a nom for lead actress in a drama series.
As expected, “The Colbert Report” and “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart” will be facing off come the Emmys. Both acclaimed shows received nominations for the same four categories: directing, picture editing and writing in the variety series category as well as for variety series. “Futurama” and “6 Days to Air: The Making of South Park” also received nods.
Acclaimed nature docu “Frozen Planet” and “Mythbusters” received noms for nonfiction series and reality program, respectively, and both “Frozen” and longtime Discovery favorite “Deadliest Catch” snagged a pack of noms in editing, cinematography and sound mixing categories.
Four nominations, four programs: Kid favorite “Phineas and Ferb” received a nod for short-format animated program while its offshoot “Phineas and Ferb: Across the 2nd Dimension” earned another for voiceover. “Good Luck Charlie” and “Wizards of Waverly Place” rounded off the package with two noms in the children’s program category.
Fox garnered Emmy nods for a wide array of shows, from “Glee” to Kiefer Sutherland vehicle “Touch.” Some categories were crowded: “Bob’s Burgers,” “American Dad” and perennial favorite “The Simpsons” all got animated program nods. Meanwhile, “So You Think You Can Dance” and “New Girl” led Fox with 11 of the 26 nominations; the latter was recognized for directing as well as for lead actress in Zooey Deschanel.
Horror miniseries “American Horror Story” had a boffo nominations morning, chilling with 17 noms to tie with “Mad Men” for the highest total for a single program. Funnyman auteur Louis C.K.’s work also received seven noms — three for directing, writing and acting in a comedy series for “Louie” and four more for his special “Louis C.K. Live at the Beacon Theater.” This year marks a dramatic Emmy boost for FX, which garnered six noms in 2011.
HBO reigned as king of the nets this year in terms of Emmy noms: The critical darling led by a margin of 21 to runner-up CBS. “Hemingway & Gellhorn” scored 15 nominations,
followed by “Game Change” and “Boardwalk Empire” with 12 apiece and “Game of Thrones” with 11. Lena Dunham’s “Girls” also brought in five noms, including the coveted categories of comedy series and comedy lead actress. Still, the total count pales in comparison to 2011’s staggering 104 nominations.
History’s Emmy presence stands a bit top-heavy, to say the least: 16 of its 17 nominations went to the well-received “Hatfields & McCoys,” which brought both Kevin Costner and Bill Paxton nods for lead actor in a miniseries or movie. The show was also recognized for writing, directing and even hairstyling. “Thank a Vet,” in the meantime, grabbed a nom in the special class — short-format nonfiction category.
“Project Runway” was indeed able to make it happen: It snagged four Emmy nods for picture editing and cinematography in a reality program, for directing for nonfiction programming and for reality-competition program. The tag team of Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn will likely bring continued success for Lifetime — a good thing, as only one other piece of programming, “Five,” received Emmy consideration.
Both “iCarly” and “Victorious” received Emmy nods for children’s program, while the comically wordy “The Penguins of Madagascar: The Return of the Revenge of Dr. Blowhole” grabbed one for animated program. Additionally, “Victorious” got some consideration for its makeup and hairstyling in the multicamera series or special category.
Old standbys “Saturday Night Live” and “30 Rock” paved the way for a strong Emmy nominations showing by NBC, with the two collecting a combined 27 noms for the net. In terms of acting kudos, the ladies led the pack: Tina Fey and Amy Poehler got nominations for lead in a comedy series while Kathy Bates of the canceled “Harry’s Law” snagged a nom for lead in a drama. Guest performers were a strong suit as well — “SNL” and “30 Rock” brought home seven noms in guest categories.
Perhaps just as impressive as PBS’ total nominations count is the number of programs that got nods: 20, representing a wide array of genres from classical dance (“New York City Ballet George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker (Live From Lincoln Center)”) to period dramas (“Downton Abbey,” which took home an impressive 16 noms). “Antiques Roadshow” — now in its 15th year Stateside — brought in a nom for reality program.
Freshman thriller “Homeland” led Showtime with nine Emmy nods, including lead actor in a drama with Brit thesp Damian Lewis and lead actress for Claire Danes. “Nurse Jackie” played runner-up with five total noms to its name while “The Borgias” had four; “Shameless,” “Dexter,” “The Big C,” and “House of Lies” (for which Don Cheadle snagged a lead comedy actor nod) provided the rest.
In a nom-for-nom repeat of last year’s Travel Channel showing, the net grabbed four Emmy nods for “Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations” in the cinematography, writing and picture editing for nonfiction program categories as well as a nonfiction series nod.
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