Emmy Predictions: Reality Host – It’s Time to Name Padma Lakshmi the ‘Top’ Host at the Primetime Emmys

Other contenders include Nicole Byer, Carson Daly, Chip and Joanna Gaines, Lizzo and Ryan Seacrest

Padma Lakshmi
Courtesy of Tommy Garcia/Bravo
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Variety Awards Circuit section is the home for all awards news and related content throughout the year, featuring the following: the official awards predictions for the upcoming Oscars and Emmys ceremonies, curated by Variety senior awards editor Clayton Davis; Awards Circuit Column, a weekly analysis dissecting the trends and contenders by television editor Michael Schneider (for Emmys) and Davis (for Oscars); Awards Circuit Podcast, a weekly interview series with talent and an expert roundtable discussion; and Awards Circuit Video analyzes various categories and contenders by Variety's leading awards pundits. Variety's unmatched coverage gives its readership unbeatable exposure in print and online, as well as provide inside reports on all the contenders in this year's awards season races.

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UPDATED: June 23, 2022



Eighty-three submissions will yield six nominees for outstanding host for a reality or reality competition series.

When there were multiple hosts of Bravo’s staple, they were nominated in this category many times, including the past two ceremonies. The show is poised to make a play again in other categories including competition, directing and editing, while the talent of Padma Lakshmi, along with judges Tom Colicchio and Gail Simmons, cannot be discounted. With three previous nominations in the category, Lakshmi has never won, receiving a boost from the Critics Choice Real TV Awards earlier this month.

With 11 Primetime Emmy Awards, RuPaul, the most commercially successful drag queen in history is also the most honored person of color in the awards ceremony’s history. There are no signs that the love for the VH1 series and its host will abate.

The queen of body positivity, Lizzo helmed a standout episode of “Saturday Night Live” earlier this year and led her own hunt for confident women to join her world tour. It was a fan favorite and the Amazon Prime Video series could receive well-deserved attention.

The fab five – Bobby Berk, Karamo Brown, Tan France, Antoni Porowski and Jonathan Van Ness –  are definitely Emmy favorites. The much-loved revival of “Queer Eye” has won nine Emmys since its 2018 debut. The group has been nominated in the hosting heat for the past three ceremonies, but they’ve yet to take home the trophy. Can Netflix get the series to the finish line this time around?

The new six-part baking reality show brought together “Saturday Night Live” alumni and Emmy winners Maya Rudolph and Andy Samberg. Could the Peacock series knead enough votes for the duo to be nommed once again, especially with other projects in the running in different categories?

The talented Will Arnett has had an incredible year in the TV realm with roles in “The Morning Show,” “Our Flag Means Death” and “Murderville.” So perhaps his hosting gig on Fox’s Lego construction show, calling back to his beloved “Batman” voice work, could do the trick.

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Nailed It!: Season 6. c. Courtesy of Netflix © 2021

Nicole Byer, the hilarious comedian made history as the first Black woman ever to be nominated in this category in 2020, and she earned another nomination in 2021. As a result, the hit Netflix baking show continues to rise.

The business dream team on ABC’s long-running hit series – Mark Cuban, Barbara Corcoran, Lori Greiner, Robert Herjavec, Daymond John and Kevin O’Leary – has found love before — the show has four wins thus far — and their magic still throws a spell on voters.

Along with pulling duties on the “Today” show, Carson Daly is a staple in the industry and could sneak into the mix once again for the NBC singing competition series.

Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn, the dynamic duo of Amazon’s new fashion competition series won this category for “Project Runway” in 2013. After getting off to a slow start following its 2020 debut, the show’s DGA nomination earlier this year could mean that TV Academy voters will pay attention to the program and its many charming qualities.

Read moreVariety’s Awards Circuit Emmys Predictions Hub.

The nomination round of voting runs from June 16 to June 27. The official nominations for the 74th Emmy Awards will be announced Tuesday, July 12.

The list of programs and potential nominees listed below is incomplete and is subject to change. The complete television awards season calendar is linked here.

2021 category winner: RuPaul, “RuPaul’s Drag Race” (VH1)


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Joanna Gaines visiting husband Chip to check in on the progression of the Pahmiyer home, as seen on Fixer Upper. Joanna points out where is she wanting to put a fireplace. Courtesy of Jeff Jones/HGTV
1 Padma Lakshmi “Top Chef” Bravo
2 RuPaul “RuPaul’s Drag Race” VH1
3 Bobby Berk, Karamo Brown, Tan Frace, Antoni Porowski, Jonathan Van Ness “Queer Eye” Netflix
4 Mark Cuban, Barbara Corcoran, Lori Greiner, Robert Herjavac, Daymond John, Kevin O’Leary “Shark Tank” ABC
5 Chip Gaines, Joanna Gaines “Fixer Upper: Welcome Home” Magnolia Network
6 Carson Daly “The Voice” NBC
7 Lizzo “Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls”
8 Nicole Byer “Nailed It!” Netflix
9 Michelle Buteau “The Circle” Netflix
10 Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn “Making the Cut” Amazon Prime Video
11 Ryan Seacrest “American Idol” ABC
12 Phil Keoghan “The Amazing Race” CBS
13 Maya Rudolph, Andy Samberg “Baking It” Peacock
14 Robert Irvine “Restaurant: Impossible” Food Network
15 TJ Lavin “The Challenge: Spies, Lies & Allies” Paramount+
16 Ted Allen “Chopped” Food Network
17 Terry Crews “America’s Got Talent” NBC
18 Jeff Probst “Survivor” CBS
19 Amy Poehler, Nick Offerman “Making It”
20 Alfonso Ribeiro “America’s Funniest Home Videos”
Aasif Mandvi “Would I Lie to You?”
Adam Rodriguez “Finding Magic Mike” HBO
Amaury Guichon “School of Chocolate”
Anthony Anderson “To Tell the Truth”
Ayesha Curry “About Last Night”
Ben Napier “Home Town: Ben’s Workshop”
Bert Kreischer “Go-Big Show”
Bobby Flay “Beat Bobby Flay” Food Network
Boulet Brothers “The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula”
Caldwell Tidicue, D.J. “Shangela” Pierce, Eureka O’Hara a.k.a. David Huggard “We’re Here” HBO
Chris Hardwick “The Wall”
Christina Hall, Tarek El Moussa “Flip of Flop” HGTV
Christina Tosi “Bake Squad”
Damon Wayans, Kyle Brandt “Frogger”
Dashaun Wesley “Legendary”
Drew Scott, Jonathan Silver Scott “Celebrity IOU”
Dwayne Wade “The Cube”
Egypt Sherrod, Mike Jackson “Married to Real Estate”
Elizabeth Banks “Press Your Luck”
Gordon Ramsay “Next Level Chef” Fox
Guy Fieri “Tournament of Champions” Food Network
Hilary Farr “Tough Love with Hilary Farr”
Howie Mandel “Bullsh*t: The Game Show” Netflix
Jane Lynch “Weakest Link”
Jeremy Ford, Kristen Kish, Justin Sutherland “Fast Foodies”
Jesse Palmer “The Bachelor” ABC
Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone, Marc Letzmann “All Elite Wrestling: Dynamite”
Jimmy Fallon “That’s My Jam”
Joel McHale “Crime Scene Kitchen”
Jon Taffer “Bar Rescue”
Jonathan “Lil Jon” Smith, Anitra Mecadon “Lil Jon Wants to Do What?
Julie Chen Moonves “Big Brother” CBS
Keke Palmer “Foodstastic”
Kelly Clarkson, Snoop Dogg “American Song Contest” NBC
Ken Jeong “I Can See Your Voice”
Kendra Wilkinson “Kendra Sells Hollywood”
Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard “Family Game Night”
Leslie Jones “Supermarket Sweep” ABC
Mark L. Walberg “Temptation Island”
Martha Stewart, Snoop Dogg “Snoop & Martha’s Very Tasty Halloween”
Matt Iseman, Akbar Gbajabiamila, Zuri Hall “American Ninja Warrior” NBC
Michael Strahan “The $100,000 Pyramid”
Michelle Rodriguez “Getaway Driver”
Mike Lemieux, Jen Macdonald, Rich Soares “Houses with History”
Mike Rowe “Dirty Jobs”
Natasha Leggero “Rat in the Kitchen”
Nick Cannon “The Masked Singer” Fox
Nicole Byer, John Cena, Camille Kostek “Wipeout”
Nikki Glaser “FBOY Island” HBO
Page Turner “Fix My Flip”
Peyton Manning “Capital One College Bowl”
Retta “Uglies House in America”
Rob Riggle, Joe Tessitore “Holey Moley”
Simon Lycett, Elizabeth Cronin, Maurice Harris “Full Bloom”
Speedy Morman “The Hype”
Stephen “tWitch” Boss “Clash of the Cover Bands”
Tamera Mowry-Housley “Baker’s Dozen”
Ty Pennington “Rock the Block”
Tyra Banks “Dancing with the Stars” ABC
Vanessa Lachey, Nick Lachey “Love is Blind” Netflix
Will Arnett “LEGO Masters” Fox
Yvonne Orji “My Mom, Your Dad” HBO
Zooey Deschanel, Michael Bolton “The Celebrity Dating Game”

2022 Primetime Emmy Awards Predictions

2022 Creative Arts Emmys Predictions

About the Primetime Emmy Awards (Emmys)

The Primetime Emmy Awards, better known as the Emmys, are given out by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (ATAS). Since 1949, the awards have recognized excellence in American primetime television programming. They are divided into three classes – Primetime Emmy Awards, the Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards (honors artisan achievements), and the Primetime Engineering Emmy Awards (recognizes significant engineering and technological contributions). The typical eligibility period is between June 1 and May 31 of any given year. The Television Academy comprises over 25,000 members, representing 30 professional peer groups, including performers, directors, producers, art directors and various artisans and executives.

  • The 74th Emmy Awards will take place on Monday, Sept. 12, and air on NBC.