×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Emmys: How ‘Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ Broke Through With Voters

While Netflix claimed bragging rights with a chart-topping 112 nominations, its streaming rivals also made their mark on the field: Hulu grabbed 27 nods, and Amazon made an impressive showing with 22 nominations (up from 16 last year) — fueled largely by its period comedy “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” which scored 14 nominations.

Voters showered the ’50s-set series with praise, with nods for best comedy series as well as lead actress Rachel Brosnahan (considered a frontrunner), supporting actor Tony Shalhoub, supporting actress Alex Borstein, and guest actress Jane Lynch. The production also garnered attention in the below-the-line categories, with nods for costumes, hairstyling, production design, casting, directing, and writing.

“We are extremely proud that the Television Academy honored so many of our talented actors, creators, and craftspeople across a number of Amazon series,” said Jennifer Salke, head of Amazon Studios. “It’s truly a Marvelous day!”

The show, about an Upper West Side housewife who ventures into standup comedy after her picture-perfect marriage falls apart, scored with wins for comedy and lead actress at the Globes as well as a Peabody Award. It was also a critical favorite, scoring a 95% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and an 80 score on Metacritic. “’Mrs. Maisel’ bristles with an energetic sense of discovery, and Rachel Brosnahan is flat-out fantastic in the title role,” wrote Variety‘s TV critic. That success fueled an early season 3 renewal, even ahead of the show’s second season premiere.

Amy Sherman-Palladino, who created and executive produces the show alongside her husband, Dan Palladino, tells Variety that the 14 total nominations reflect the hard work of the show’s cast and crew. “We have a lot of really hardworking, brilliant people over here who have not slept in in a year and a half for us,” she says. “We’re very happy that all their work has been really acknowledged. Everyday we show up and there’s nothing but skirts and crinolines as far as the eye can see running around.”

The Palladinos — who also created “Gilmore Girls” — joke that they’re even claiming “full credit” for Alexis Bledel’s nod for “The Handmaid’s Tale.” “It’s a real thrill for us because we couldn’t get the damn ‘Gilmore Girls’ there, but we’ve made up for it with this one,” jokes Dan Palladino. “The [voters] are actually thinking Rory, they’re not thinking Emily.”

The producers credit the support of Amazon, which has faced some struggles creatively before the arrival of Salke to head its programming. “It was a financial gamble for them and it was an experiment for us because we had never done anything this big,” says Dan Palladino. “And I think [these nominations] certainly validate that.”

Adds Sherman-Palladino, “if you have a very specific creative vision and you want someone to really have your back, it signals that because it’s been a great ride there,” she says.

They also credit the awards campaign, which filled the streets of Los Angeles and subways in New York City with hot pink billboards, as well as ads for “Susie Myerson,” Borstein’s manager character. “They weren’t self serious, which we were really interested in avoiding,” says Dan Palladino. “We saw them a lot in the subway, and I only saw one disfigured. I happen to know it was just disfigured by Alex Borstein, who disfigured her own poster.”

They joke that this success will only make the notoriously meticulous duo even more “impossible” to deal with. “It’s everybody’s worst nightmare,” she says. “They should just be sobbing and handing out tissue boxes because it’s just a nightmare from here on in.”

The producers say the show has found its audience because of its “entertainingly funny” tone — a welcome respite from the relentless negative headlines. “The world is ending basically,” says Sherman-Palladino. “So why not look at some pretty cars and some great skirts and here’s some fabulous music because it’s all over any minute now. There’s sort of an energetic, breezy, fun, colorful, alternate universe that you can enter for a little while — and then go cry and eat your hair.”

Quips Dan Palladino: “Plus, Eisenhower was the president!”

POPULAR ON VARIETY:

More TV

  • CENTRAL PARK FIVE

    How Spencer Averick Built Suspense Through Editing Ava DuVernay's 'When They See Us'

    For most of the “When They See Us” shoot, director Ava DuVernay worked with two or three cameras, but when it came to shooting the tense courtroom seen where Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana and Korey Wise are put on trial, DuVernay shot with four cameras. Editor Spencer Averick says, “We needed [...]

  • Eliot Goldberg

    AMC Networks Unscripted Head Eliot Goldberg Steps Down

    Eliot Goldberg, AMC Networks’ executive vice president of nonfiction and alternative programming for AMC, Sundance TV and BBC America, is departing the company after six years. Marco Bresaz, senior vice president of nonfiction and alternative programming, will lead the nonfiction programming group going forward. Kelly Nash, who was recently promoted to vice president of nonfiction [...]

  • A LITLLE LATE WITH LILLY SINGH

    Lilly Singh Mocks Disney Plus 'Outdated Cultural Depictions' Warnings for Racist Movies

    Lilly Singh lampooned Disney Plus’ disclaimer that certain older movies include “outdated cultural depictions” on her NBC show. The YouTube and late-night TV comedian took issue with Disney’s euphemistic phrasing — pointing out that the warning is really about the “racist” tropes in decades-old movies that were made for kids. Disney Plus includes “a bunch [...]

  • Gloria Calderón Kellett Signs Overall Deal

    Gloria Calderón Kellett Signs Overall Deal With Amazon

    Gloria Calderón Kellett has inked a multi-year overall deal at Amazon. “I have been so blown away by the original series coming out of Amazon,” said Calderón Kellett. “Their commitment to supporting creators, specifically women, has been next level. It’s clear they are committed to supporting outstanding, quality television. When I met the diverse Amazon [...]

  • 'Big Brother' Spain in Storm Over

    'Big Brother' Spain Caught Up in Storm Over Video of Alleged Sexual Assault

    Disturbing footage has emerged of a “Big Brother” Spain contestant being confronted by producers with video of herself allegedly being sexually assaulted by another housemate on the reality show – and then being told not to talk about it with her fellow contestants. Carlota Prado was brought into the “Big Brother” house’s “diary room,” where [...]

  • Dollface TV Show

    'Dollface' Production Crew Balances Grounded Elements With the Bizarre

    Hulu’s new comedy “Dollface” stars Kat Dennings as Jules, a woman jumping back into friendships after breaking up with her boyfriend. Production designer Susie Mancini and prop master Sarah Snyder were tasked with balancing the grounded elements of the show with the satirical and fantastical moments that also exist within the series’ world.  Woom, the [...]

  • Models on the catwalkVictoria's Secret Fashion

    Why the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show Was Canceled

    Goodbye, angel wings and bedazzled undergarments. The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show is officially canceled. L Brands’ CFO Stuart Burgdoerfer confirmed to analysts on the company’s earnings call on Thursday that the hourlong special, which has aired since 2001, would not be happening. Why? The official answer is that L Brands — the parent company of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content