LOS ANGELES (AP) — Assorted facts and figures drawn from the nominations for the 73rd Emmy Awards:
FENNELL FINDS HONORS ACROSS FIELDS
Fresh off an Oscar win for best original screenplay for "Promising Young Woman," which she also directed, Renaissance woman Emerald Fennell has earned an Emmy nomination for acting. She's up for best supporting actress in a drama for playing Camilla Parker Bowles in "The Crown." Fennell previously earned two nominations for her writing and producing of "Killing Eve" in 2019.
Mj Rodriguez of "Pose," nominated for best actress in a drama, breaks ground as the first trans woman to be nominated in a lead acting category. She's the third trans person overall to be nominated, after Laverne Cox's 2014 guest drama actress nod for "Orange is the New Black" and Rain Valdez's 2020 nomination for short form comedy or drama actress for "Razor Tongue." And Jonathan Majors and Jurnee Smollett, of the canceled HBO sci-fi drama "Lovecraft Country" are the first Black actors to be nominated in the lead acting category for the same drama series. They're among 46 people of color nominated across all acting categories.
TIMING IS KIND TO RASHAD
Phylicia Rashad landed her third straight Emmy nomination for "This Is Us" after getting harsh criticism for her celebration of the freeing of her former co-star Bill Cosby. The voting that led to Rashad's nod for best guest actress in a drama series ended on June 28, two days before the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania reversed Cosby's sexual assault conviction and allowed him to be released from prison. Rashad celebrated the move by tweeting "FINALLY!!!! A terrible wrong is being righted- a miscarriage of justice is corrected!" Her critics included Howard University, where she had just been made dean of the College of Fine Arts. Rashad later tweeted that "I fully support survivors of sexual assault coming forward." Rashad's first two Emmy nominations in 1985 and 1986 came for playing Cosby's wife Clair Huxtable on "The Cosby Show."
At age 73, Carl Weathers has earned his first nomination for a major acting award with a nod for best guest actor in a drama series for "The Mandalorian." Best known for playing Apollo Creed in four "Rocky" films, the former NFL player has been acting since the mid-1970s in movies including "Predator," "Action Jackson" and "Happy Gilmore."
NOMS BY THE NUMBERS:
306: Emmy nominations through the years for "Saturday Night Live." With 21 new nods in 2021, the sketch institution extends a record that is unlikely ever to be broken. It has nearly double the total of the closest contender, "Game of Thrones" which earned 161.
24: Nods for the queen and the bounty hunter. "The Crown" and "The Mandalorian" are the year's top nominees with two dozen nods apiece.
23: Nominations for fake TV. " WandaVision " with its synthesized faux-shows in the style of "I Love Lucy" "The Dick Van Dyke Show" and "Malcolm In The Middle," has a shot at a whole bunch of very real Emmys.
20: Nominations for the coach. The total for "Ted Lasso" tops the 19 earned by "Glee" in 2010 to make it the most nominated first-season comedy ever. It fell just short of the record for a comedy series, 22, set by "30 Rock" in 2009.
6: First-time nominations for cast members of "Ted Lasso." Most of the half-dozen performers were virtually unknown in the U.S. before the upstart soccer comedy. They include star Jason Sudeikis along with Brett Goldstein, Nick Mohammed, Hannah Waddingham, Jeremy Swift and Juno Temple.
5: First-time nominations for cast members of "Hamilton." There are few things "Hamilton" hasn't done, few awards it hasn't won, but the Broadway show's television version on Disney+ brought the first career Emmy nods to Renée Elise Goldsberry, Jonathan Groff, Anthony Ramos, Phillipa Soo and Daveed Diggs.
4: Men from "Ted Lasso" nominated in the same category. Goldstein, Mohammed, Swift and Brendan Hunt make up half the nominees for best supporting actor in a comedy series.
3: Actors nominated for two different shows. Jean Smart is up for best actress in a comedy series for "Hacks" and best supporting actress in a limited series or TV movie for "Mare of Easttown." Aidy Bryant was nominated for best actress in a comedy for "Shrill" and best supporting actress in a comedy for "Saturday Night Live." Her "SNL" castmate Kenan Thompson was nominated for best supporting actor in a comedy for that show and best actor in a comedy for "Kenan."
2: Nominees for best variety sketch series. The category will be a game of one-on-one between "Saturday Night Live" and "A Black Lady Sketch Show" in a year of slim sketch pickings. The relatively new category had just three nominees last year, but has included either five or six in every year since 2015.
1: Acting nomination for Rosie Perez, who scored her first this year, for best supporting actress in a comedy series in "The Flight Attendant." Her Emmy noms resume is deep and diversified, though. She was nominated three times for her choreography on "In Living Color" and once as a host on "The View."
0: The number of times Netflix has won the Emmys top prize, best drama series, despite a dominant performance in the sheer number of nominations in recent years. It has a very strong chance this year to finally win best drama series with top nominee "The Crown."
More Emmy news:
The biggest snubs and surprises of the 2021 Emmy nominations
2021 Emmys: Snubs and surprises
Most of the best television these days comes via the limited series, a stone-cold fact that you know and I know, but somehow has eluded the television academy, which still hasn’t adjusted its Emmy nomination numbers to keep up with the times.
And that failure can only lead to one outcome on this Emmy nomination morning: “snubs.”
Not true snubs, mind you. Voters aren’t actively shunning anyone. (Though this is Hollywood, so maybe I shouldn’t underestimate the potential for pettiness.) It’s just that there are too few slots for the amount of excellent work being done in the limited series format.
So what shows and actors were “snubbed”? And, on a happier note, who’s feeling glad all over now that the nominations have arrived? Let’s take a look.
SNUB: “Small Axe” (limited series)
Steve McQueen’s anthology series of five movies — an epic, intimate look at London’s West Indian community from the mid-1960s through the 1980s — were always intended to be shown on television because McQueen wanted them to be accessible to a wide audience. But that didn’t stop the Los Angeles Film Critics Association from giving its best picture prize to “Small Axe” last year.
Perhaps Emmy voters were confused. Were they movies? Television? And if the latter, what kind of television? Were they too British? Too smart? Yes, I’m grasping at the reason for the most lamentable omission in the crowded limited series category.
SNUB: Thuso Mbedu, “The Underground Railroad”
Mbedu is a star in her native South Africa, but Barry Jenkins’ adaptation of Colson Whitehead’s novel was her introduction to most voters. She brought a fiery intensity to Cora, the enslaved young woman journeying to freedom, transfixing viewers with every gesture. Apparently there weren’t enough viewers, though, as the weighty series didn’t benefit from being dropped all at once on Amazon.
SURPRISE: Cynthia Erivo, “Genius: Aretha”
Well ... as much of a surprise as it can be for a two-time Oscar nominee and Grammy winner to earn a nomination for playing the Queen of Soul in a highly promoted limited series. Still, Erivo won a place in the Emmys’ most competitive category — lead actress, limited series/TV movie — perhaps blazing a trail for Jennifer Hudson, who will star in another Aretha Franklin biopic, “Respect,” arriving in theaters in September.
SURPRISE: Ewan McGregor, “Halston”
“Halston” sits at a 49 score on review aggregator Metacritic, but voters didn’t blame McGregor for this unusually restrained and lazily plotted Ryan Murphy limited series. I will say that nobody has looked better smoking a cigarette since Rita Hayworth in “Gilda.” Apparently, that’s worth something.
SURPRISE: The “Hamilton” acting nominations
Look, I cried when Philip died. And I still get a little verklempt hearing “Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story.” But “Hamilton” isn’t a TV movie. It’s a filmed performance of a play. You’d think that television academy voters would understand the difference.
SURPRISE: “The Boys” (drama series)
Talking gills, exploding whales, enormous ... um ... appendages, exploding heads ... “The Boys” isn’t “The Crown.” And its vigilantes aren’t Marvel superheroes either. But the Amazon series’ subversive storytelling appealed to enough voters in a year when more traditional drama series were on a pandemic-mandated break.
SNUB: Pedro Pascal, “The Mandalorian”
Hey, that mustache was on point. Why no love for our soft space dad?
SNUB: “Master of None” (comedy series)
Is a series a comedy if it barely delivers a smile, much less a genuine laugh? Emmy voters didn’t think so, failing to nominate the third season of Aziz Ansari’s Netflix show (It’s first two seasons, which were in fact funny, earned nods.) The latest installment of “Master of None” was not without merit. But it was without humor. It should have been shuttled to drama where maybe voters would have rewarded its Bergman-soaked detachment.