The 2020 Emmy nominations are set to be announced on July 28. As this year’s award season moves along and the field continues to narrow, Variety senior editors Danielle Turchiano and Michael Schneider are taking a close look at the major categories to explain who is in contention and declare their personal favorites. In this edition of Variety’s “Awards Heat” video series presented by Apple TV Plus, Turchiano and Schneider examine the drama lead actor category.
Last year, Billy Porter took home the award for his performance in the first season of “Pose.” Although Porter is in contention again this year for Season 2, he faces a new competitor in “The Crown’s” Tobias Menzies, who took over the role of Prince Philip for the show’s third season and was nominated for a Golden Globe in January for his performance. Additionally, Matt Smith, who previously played the royal on the show, was nominated in 2018, setting a precedent for the academy’s affection for the character and the series.
Although neither has won, both “Better Call Saul’s” Bob Odenkirk and “Ozark’s” Jason Bateman have been nominated multiple times already and remain strong contenders for this year’s race.
Additionally, three actors from “This Is Us” are vying for nominations. Sterling K. Brown won the category in 2017, while Milo Ventimiglia has been nominated before. Meanwhile, Justin Hartley is competing as a lead instead of a supporting actor for the first time this year.
Both Brian Cox and Jeremy Strong are also in contention for “Succession.”
Variety’s “Awards Heat” presented by Apple TV Plus takes a look at the Emmy competition, as Schneider and Turchiano break down eligible contenders in each category leading up to the Emmys.
The TV Academy recently announced that the comedy and drama categories will be extended to eight nominees this year instead of the usual seven. The 72nd annual Emmy Awards, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, will take place on Sept. 20.