Awards HQ Sept. 17: Emmys Weekend Final Predictions, Producers on How the Show Will Look, Last Minute Surprises

·51-min read
AWARDS HQ logo

Greetings from Variety Awards Headquarters! Today is Sept. 17, 2021, which means it’s now just 2 days until the Primetime Emmys telecast on Sept. 19.

And this is it! The weekend we’ve all been waiting for. All will be revealed on Sunday night. Will the season-long “Ted Lasso” and “The Crown” dominance hold? What will be the surprises? Who will be celebrating on Monday morning? And who will be on Variety’s famed day-after Emmy cover this coming week? All things I can’t wait to find out! (Especially the last one, since I’ll be scrambling to write that story on Monday morning!)

More from Variety

We continue to live in bizarre times, and yet this weekend has a weird sense of normalcy attached to it. Even though press isn’t allowed at the actual Emmys ceremony on Sunday night — we’ll be covering it remotely again, for the second year in a row — there are plenty of other events happening this weekend that are, believe it or not, in person. I’ll be attending the Television Academy’s Performer Nominees reception at its North Hollywood headquarters on Friday night, as well as the Creative Coalition’s Humanitarian Awards gathering on Saturday (hosted by our own Marc Malkin!) and then the MPTF’s Evening Before the Emmys event later that evening. That’s a lot!

Most of these events require COVID-19 testing, which is a good thing. Just be careful who you go with, as you might not get your results back in time. I’m still fuming that I couldn’t join my colleagues backstage at the Creative Arts Emmys last weekend because Carbon Health didn’t get my results back in a prompt, timely manner. It was quite disappointing, and I ended up covering the Sunday events from home. Thankfully, the Television Academy’s Twitter feed was quick to announce the winners in the room. But I would have liked to, well, see the room.

But I digress! Speaking of the room, this year’s Primetime Emmys will once again look and feel different, and I think that’s a good thing. I’m a proponent of mixing up the tried-and-true awards show format, and that’s what Reggie Hudlin and Done+Dusted are trying to do. I talk to Reggie and D+D’s Ian Stewart below, and we’ve got plenty of details on how this year’s show will have a party atmosphere. So without any more ado, let’s get going!

Emmys Producers Reggie Hudlin and Ian Stewart Tease This Sunday’s Show: Cedric the Entertainer, MC Lyte, Reggie Watts… and Drunk Karaoke?

I caught up with Emmys producers Reggie Hudlin and Ian Stewart (of Done+Dusted) to give me the latest on how this Sunday’s show is shaping up, and they’re promising a party. Cedric the Entertainer, music by the inventive Reggie Watts, and MC Lyte as the show’s announcer. But they’re also mixing up the expected order of the show (with an acknowledgement that the Oscars ran into a bit of trouble trying to do the same thing), and bringing more elements like music into the mix. Here’s our chat:

AWARDS HQ: How are you guys describing this year’s show?

REGGIE HUDLIN: You know it’s a celebration. When we first sat down with Cedric, we were like, ‘what do you want this to be?’ And that was the first word out of his mouth. We couldn’t have agreed more, because man, did TV get us through some tough times? Yes it did. Let’s be frank, this is the best TV in the history of the medium. It’s been an amazing year. There’s a lot to celebrate.

IAN STEWART: But also I think for all of us, the industry, celebrate the fact that we can actually get back together. In a fairly controlled way but actually in a together way. We know what’s going to happen. Our hardest job will be trying to keep people in their seats or get them back in their seats during commercials. Because everyone’s gonna go, ‘oh my god, Mike, I haven’t seen you for so long!’ So we’re certainly certainly bringing that party celebration to it.

AWARDS HQ: With those tables, I assume there’ll be some some food, some drink as well.

HUDLIN: Oh yeah, a little drinky drink, a little snacky snack!

STEWART: I’ve said it before but, when we all go out to dinner we don’t line up in rows, and look forward. We sit around a table and we laugh, and we tell terrible jokes and we have to laugh at our own terrible jokes. It’s just the way you want to really consume being entertained.

AWARDS HQ: It’s sort of making the best out of the situation. Obviously with only about 500 people in the tent, you’re able to do that. How you were able to pivot to that, once it became apparent that it was going to be a limited audience?

HUDLIN: The truth is, Ian and I have separately always wanted to do a show with tables and not in theatrical seating. So for us, this was a complete lemonade situation, like, great! That’s our approach to these shows, how do we reinvent, how do we do what we’ve always wanted to do, how do we make people go, ‘Oh, I haven’t quite seen that before!’ We think that this environment creates a party environment, which makes the audience happy, which makes the viewer happy.

STEWART: As we sort of slowly take these steps out of the worst of the pandemic, it just gets a little easier and a little easier. Obviously we work this out with the LA County Health Department, that goes without saying. So we’re under their protocols. But look at the Grammys or the Oscars. They were sort of back together but they weren’t able to be back together. Here they can, everyone’s vaccinated, everyone’s negative tested. You don’t have to leave your seats, you don’t have to let the next nominees come to use your seat. You get to sit down and sit through a show. That’s a magical further, big stride out of what we’ve all been through.

AWARDS HQ: You’ve got “The Crown” stars dialing in from their remote location, I understand there’s a couple other shows that will be remote that you’re going to be able to dip in and out of.

STEWART: We all thought at the beginning, are people going to want to come? Actually, it was like the Willy Wonka golden ticket. Because it’s limited even by the nominees, you’ve never seen them come back so fast, saying, ‘we’re in.’ We of course offered the remote thing. Some people don’t feel comfortable and we don’t want anyone feel comfortable so of course you can come remote. Some can’t be here, the reason ‘The Crown’ people are not here is because they’re in London, and they can’t come here. So, the remote option was there, but quite frankly, we set up quite a big remote system and then sort of dismantled it because there just aren’t that many people coming in by remote. Everyone seems to feel incredibly comfortable and feel like this is a safe space.

HUDLIN: The folks in ‘The Crown,’ we don’t know exactly what they’re going to do, but they got really inspired by what the ‘Schitt’s Creek’ people did last year. They threw a great party, which was great because, then we get to go to their party. Which normally we don’t get invited to, but now the viewers get to hang out with them. We’re looking forward to that, you get to see a lot of different parties over the course of the night.

AWARDS HQ: What does having this smaller room also allow you to do? I know it’s a quicker jump to the stage, so that will save some time.

STEWART: You’re right, by the way, you can jump up a lot a lot faster. You don’t have to walk through the whole of the theater, that is true. But actually the major advantage for us is because you’re in the vibe of being in an entertaining space, and we got Reggie Watts spinning his tunes. Once we kick off, which is hopefully going to be one hell of a kick off, we’re not going to stop. That’s another thing. So, you’ve been to a thousand of these things yourself Mike, but they sort of get going, then they stop for the break, and then they get going and they stop again. And it’s hard to maintain any sort of emotional fun or party through that. But we’re not going to do that, we’re just going to keep on going. So it’s seamless. From the moment we drop that first beat to the moment Ced says goodbye, it’s going to be more in, I don’t think cabaret is the word, but that environment.

AWARDS HQ: So what might we get to see?

HUDLIN: Everyone gets to be in the same room and they’ve maybe been in their production bubble, but now the ‘WandaVision’ people get to hang out with the cast of ‘The Boys’ and worlds collide. Because everyone’s a fan of everyone else. But they actually get to be together for the first time. We’re going to keep the cameras floating around so the audience will get to see peaks of that action,

STEWART: We are going to have things that you can follow along at home, and actually watch what’s going on when the cameras aren’t on. So there’s going to be some opportunities for people at home to play along with us during the night and do some fun things on the side.

AWARDS HQ: And I’ve seen you guys hint at the opening number and more pre-tape. Anything more you can sort of say about some of the some of those elements?

HUDLIN: Cedric is so talented. I’ve worked with him many times over the years and there’s a reason why he’s called ‘The Entertainer.’ He’s a certified King of Comedy. What we really want to do in the course of the show is feature all the things he can do. We’ll have him tell jokes, there’ll be some music, there’ll be some drama. We’re going to feature all the cool stuff he can do. We’ve been in the music studio. We’ve got the surprising things.

STEWART: Another thing that Reggie and I looked at so many times is, there’s a traditional pattern to the way that every award shows starts, and what happens and the editorial beats to that. Often you’re about 16, 17 minutes in before you go, ‘Oh, they’re going to give out an award on an award show.’ So we’re going to mess with that format a little bit as well. Let’s get to the awards as well. As Reggie says, ‘we’re going to start with the finale.’ And then, quickly give out some awards to some very deserving people.

AWARDS HQ: The Oscars this year mixed up the order of the final winners, because they assumed they’d end with a touching win for Chadwick Boseman. But that didn’t happen, and it ended up being awkward, since winner Anthony Hopkins wasn’t even there. How much can you mess with you know the anticipation for some of those major categories?

HUDLIN: You’re building a story arc, you want to hold people’s interest but you’ve got to have a build. What’s great about the Emmys is that you’ve got so many great categories. Dramas and comedies and variety shows and limited series, all of which the audiences are deeply invested in. We want to make sure that throughout the night, you’re getting a taste of your favorite shows, whatever those might be. So we think if you’re a fan of TV there’ll be something for you to watch the whole show.

STEWART: You’re alluding to something about the traditional way that the awards and the pattern they’ve given out. If somebody can guess the pattern of awards for Sunday night, I’ll give them $1000. There will be some surprises in there.

AWARDS HQ: It does seem like damned if you do, damned if you don’t, right, because I know the Oscar folks were trying to do something different and unique and it didn’t quite work out the way they had hoped.

STEWART: There’s a possibility we open with an award that somebody is not able to pick up. And then you’re like, Well, as you say you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t. We don’t know what’s going to happen. You just have to try and set it up as best you can and hope that you get lucky. The point about the Oscars, without going into it because it’s actually pretty bloody sad, but that award was of course, not like anybody expected it to be. And I felt very sorry for them as producers, quite frankly.

HUDLIN: It was a tough spot. Because I had such a personal relationship with Chadwick, I had an expectation and I was bummed out. And, obviously, Anthony Hopkins was caught off guard and, so it was unfortunate for all parties. And the producers of the show are friends of mine. But God bless them for that level of ambition. All of us who have been producing shows during COVID, we’ve been taking this as an opportunity to shake up the award show format and try some things. And we’ve all learned from each other. You see, oh, so and so did that and that worked, and I’m going to steal that. Or uh-oh, I’m not going to do that. There’s a community amongst us, and we all learn from each other.

STEWART: Last year’s Emmys was really well received, it was a very different type of show. But we didn’t get together and go, ‘Okay, let’s do the same as last year but a little bit worse.’ You always try to move forward and quite frankly sometimes you fall on your face, but if you fall on your face, at least you’re moving forward.

AWARDS HQ: One of our biggest Emmy stories last year was our piece on the people handing out Emmy statues in the hazmat suits. Did you ponder what this year’s version of that might be?

HUDLIN: That way lies madness. When you’re lucky enough, you sit around and have an idea, we crack each other up, and then you do it and then it becomes a thing. Well you can’t manufacturer a thing. It doesn’t work that way. So that’s why we don’t focus on, how do we replicate the exact same rhythms that we did last year? It’s more like, no, we’re gonna make a different show based on where we are in popular culture right now. We try to just be in the moment, that’s the Miles Davis rule, jazz is the music that we are called upon to play in any given day. So, we’re going to try to make a show that celebrates where the medium of television is right now.

AWARDS HQ: On a tragic note, the death of Michael K. Williams so close to the ceremony, how might that impact the show or the In Memoriam?

HUDLIN: What a tragic loss of such a gigantic talent, who had such an amazing body of work already, but clearly had decades of brilliance ahead of him. Any time you do these shows, In Memoriam is such an important part of these shows. It’s our chance to say final goodbyes to people. Our job is to honor Michael, and everyone, this year and I have to say, as we were putting together In Memoriam, we’ve had a lot of unbelievable losses this year. So many titans have fallen this year. So we’re trying to do our best to honor everybody who has done amazing work that we’ve all benefited from.

STEWART: As a producer you’re just caught between a rock and a hard place because of course he’s nominated for that, and if he wins it would be an amazing moment. But also it’s not his award. It’s all the nominees’ award and they have been recognized as well. And to overshadow them in that category is also unfair. I don’t think he would have wanted that. I mean, if he wins, it will be an amazing moment, if someone else wins, it will be an amazing moment for them. So it’s it’s a tricky thing, as Reggie said, all we can do is try and be agnostic and try and treat everyone with the dignity and respect they deserve for everything they’ve given for the industry.

AWARDS HQ: You have Jon Batiste and Leon Bridges performing during the In Memoriam, which sounds amazing.

HUDLIN: That was a really fortunate break, In Memoriam is very sensitive moment, so find the right artists the right song. We’re all fans of both Jon Batiste and Leon Bridges, and then we found out they’re best friends. And they’d love to work together! Just hearing what they have planned, it’s beautiful, so perfect, sensitive and delicate for the moment. We feel very fortunate to have artists of that caliber performing on our stage.

STEWART: Sometimes you just all the stars align, because we actually had that thought, without knowing of their closeness. It’s the hardest thing to get right in the whole show, because the sentiment has to be absolutely perfect. And to have all those stars aligned, we’re thrilled.

AWARDS HQ: What was the toughest nut to crack and pull off this year?

HUDLIN: Well, you know, we’ll know if we pulled everything off on Monday. Honestly, every day, there’s this wave of panic that goes through us. What are we gonna do about that problem? And then we solve it, we pat ourselves on the back. But, no time for that, here’s another challenge. Every day that’s what we’re doing, we’re just defusing bombs.

STEWART: And just that multi hyphenate that Cedric is, one thing to crack is to give him a chance to show all the things that he can do. He can act, he can sing, comedy goes without saying. Trying to try to thread that through in a narrative is important to us as well. I hope we’ve got the nuance right, you can tell us on Sunday.

AWARDS HQ: Do you have a special announcer?

HUDLIN: MC Lyte, who I love. I loved her as a hip hop artist, and once she started doing announcing, I was like, ‘Can I use her every time?’ Her voice has a perfect texture. It’s empathetic, it’s sincere, it has authority. She is extraordinary.

STEWART: Having live music in the venue is really challenging, especially for a big band of any sort, due to the COVID regulations. The fact that they have to blow instruments and they have to sing. So flipping that around and bringing in Reggie Watts, that was a wonderful way to come out of this as well. I think he’s really going to bring something to it. He’s infectious, that foot’s just going to stop to happen.

AWARDS HQ: I hope I hear some beatboxing and some sound effects from him as well.

HUDLIN: Oh yeah, and that’s what we’re excited about, he’s an artist with a capital ‘A.’ He brings groove, and elevates the proceedings. He’s the perfect spirit of the production.

AWARDS HQ: So, give me a teaser, maybe maybe something that will make sense when I watch the show on Sunday but right now, we’ll just go over my head.

STEWART: Okay, I’ll give you one. Do you drink?

AWARDS HQ: Yep!

STEWART: Yes! So do I. So, at some stage in your life, probably there was 1:12 a.m. You sang along, when maybe you had one one too many, and you sang along to a song. So you’ll be able to sing along to the beginning of our show.

HUDLIN: Nice, well played.

Emmy Producers Expected to Include a Fully Accessible, ADA-Compliant Ramp on Stage at This Year’s Ceremony

Following concerns raised by the Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund, along with “Crip Camp” co-director James LeBrecht, the Emmys stage is believed to have added a fully accessible ramp compliant with the Americans With Disabilities Act.

That’s according to LeBrecht, who tells Variety that he has been assured by CBS — which is airing the Emmy Awards this Sunday — that the telecast’s production team have addressed any accessibility issues.

“CBS Entertainment has informed my lawyers DREDF and Michelle Uzeta that anyone sitting in the audience will have unimpeded access to an ADA-compliant ramp to the stage, and that the ramp has been constructed as a fully-integrated, visible portion of the stage,” LeBrecht said in a statement. “I look forward to watching an accessible awards show that includes people with disabilities.”

The DREDF and LeBrecht had previously filed a complaint of ADA violations, after being informed that the Emmy stage, built inside a tent on the L.A. Live Event Deck in downtown Los Angeles, was inaccessible from a front approach.

“The inaccessible stage violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and California civil rights laws, and must be immediately remediated,” the complaint said. “Mr. LeBrecht has repeatedly endeavored to educate CBS Entertainment and the Television Academy about their obligations under the ADA to provide an accessible stage. He first contacted the Academy on these issues in April 2021.”

LeBrecht said he had been informed that individuals who cannot climb the stairs to the stage could go backstage to access the stage. But, the complaint noted, “This is not a directly connecting route as required by the ADA Standard. Another suggestion is that a staff member can bring a microphone to individuals’ seating area. Neither approach complies with the ADA, and each conveys disrespect and exclusion. Separate is never equal.”

Read more here.

Awards Circuit Column: Mike’s Final Predictions; ‘Ted Lasso,’ ‘The Crown’ Feel Like Locks, While Limited Series Is a Tossup

There will almost certainly be several winners clutching their first-ever Emmys the night of Sept. 19 — some of whom are practically shoo-ins, like “Ted Lasso” star Jason Sudeikis, who had never been nominated before this year. (Actually, that’s true of his fellow “Ted Lasso” co-stars as well.)

Others have been nominated before but are on tap to finally win one, such as Kathryn Hahn for “WandaVision” — and on a terribly tragic and bittersweet note, the late Michael K. Williams, for “Lovecraft Country.” I couldn’t wait to see him land that Emmy, so overdue given his body of work. And I’m so saddened that he won’t be there to soak in that moment.

Williams’ death casts a bit of a pall on this year’s ceremony, but there are also plenty of uplifting moments to look forward to, including the chance for both Jean Smart and Kenan Thompson — easily among TV’s Most Valuable Players — to potentially each win two Emmys on the night (but at the very least, one apiece).

I feel like after the year that we’ve had, it’s time for some uplift. This won’t solve our problems, as Texas lawmakers attempt to curtail voting rights and the rights of women, and anti-vaxxers selfishly keep our country from moving past this pandemic, but the Emmys have a chance to honor shows that celebrate the human spirit, like “Ted Lasso,” and feature damn good storytelling, like “Mare of Easttown.”

Perhaps I’m a little punchy after covering this race, but I think voters are ready to make some noise by honoring “Pose” on the way out, perhaps with a history-making win for Mj Rodriguez. With just two entrants in the sketch race, how fun would it be to see Robin Thede up there? (No offense to Lorne Michaels; he’ll be OK.) And how are we so lucky to have two amazing Hannahs (Einbinder and Waddingham) competing in the comedy supporting actress race?

Now, here’s my stab at this year’s final predictions. It’s a great crop of contenders, and no matter who wins, it promises to be a big night.

Drama Series

“The Crown” (Netflix); backup: “Pose” (FX)

Comedy Series

“Ted Lasso” (Apple TV Plus); backup: “Hacks” (HBO Max)

Limited Series

“Mare of Easttown” (HBO); backup: “The Queen’s Gambit” (Netflix)

Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Billy Porter (“Pose”); backup: Josh O’Connor (“The Crown”)

Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Mj Rodriguez (“Pose”); backup: Emma Corrin (“The Crown”)

Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Jason Sudeikis (“Ted Lasso”); backup: Michael Douglas (“The Kominsky Method”)

Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Jean Smart (“Hacks”); backup: Kaley Cuoco (“The Flight Attendant”)

Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie

Paul Bettany (“WandaVision”); backup: Hugh Grant (“The Undoing”)

Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie

Kate Winslet (“Mare of Easttown”); backup: Anya Taylor-Joy (“The Queen’s Gambit”)

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Michael K. Williams (“Lovecraft Country”); backup: Tobias Menzies (“The Crown”)

Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Gillian Anderson (“The Crown”); backup: Ann Dowd (“The Handmaid’s Tale”)

Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Kenan Thompson (“Saturday Night Live”); backup: Brett Goldstein (“Ted Lasso”)

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Hannah Waddingham (“Ted Lasso”); backup: Hannah Einbinder (“Hacks”)

Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie

Evan Peters (“Mare of Easttown”); backup: Daveed Diggs (“Hamilton”)

Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie

Kathryn Hahn (“WandaVision”); backup: Jean Smart (“Mare of Easttown”)

Competition Series

“RuPaul’s Drag Race” (VH1); backup: “Nailed It” (Netflix)

Variety Sketch Series

“A Black Lady Sketch Show” (HBO); backup: “Saturday Night Live” (NBC)

Variety Talk Series

“Last Week Tonight With John Oliver” (HBO); backup: “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” (CBS)

Scroll below for more picks from the Variety TV team!

TV Academy Officials Elaborate on Telecast Plans; CEO Frank Scherma Confirms Re-Election Bid (EXCLUSIVE)

When Frank Scherma was elected as chairman and CEO of the Television Academy three years ago, he came to office with grand plans to reform the organization. What he didn’t plan on was a global pandemic interrupting that focus.

That’s why, as Scherma confirmed to Variety on Wednesday morning, he plans to run for re-election in November in a bid to continue as chairman/CEO for another two-year term. (The Academy extended the terms of its board by a year due to COVID-19, but there will be an election in November for a new board term starting in January 2022.)

Scherma and TV Academy president Maury McIntyre spoke to Variety at the Television Academy’s North Hollywood headquarters, as part of a preview for this Sunday’s Primetime Emmys telecast.

“There was a lot that the Board of Governors and myself and Maury and the team wanted to accomplish,” Scherma said of his tenure. “It’s harder to accomplish on Zooms than all of us sitting face to face and getting through stuff — between the diversity and equity inclusion issues, all the things that we’re trying to do as an Academy. I still see there’s a lot that we want to do over the next two-and-a-half years. And I want to do that and get that done. And then I can sort of leave in peace.”

As host Cedric the Entertainer and executive producers Reggie Hudlin and Done+Dusted’s Ian Stewart offered some new information about this year’s ceremony — held inside a tent at downtown’s L.A. Live events deck — Scherma and McIntyre also elaborated on how the COVID-compliant event would function. Read more here.

In Memory of Madison Chandler, Cookie Aficionado, Shih Tzu Extraordinaire and Our Favorite Awards HQ Correspondent

It’s with a heavy heart that we must share the passing of Danielle Turchiano‘s beloved Madison Chandler this week. Madison had fans all over the world, was a big part of our Variety family, and even served in recent months as a correspondent for AWARDS HQ! (Above, there he is, I assume writing up his recent visit to Amazon’s Emmy FYC popup for “The Boys.”)

We’re sending our warm thoughts and our best to Danielle. Some shots of Madison from his Instagram account, @therealmadisonc, which recently hit 20,000 followers:

Enjoying Awards HQ? Get the most important stories delivered to your inbox every day by subscribing to other Variety newsletters.

‘RuPaul’s Drag Race,’ ‘Bo Burnham: Inside,’ ‘SNL,’ ‘Queen’s Gambit’ Gain Steam Heading Out of Sunday’s Creative Arts Emmys

The Emmy momentum is on RuPaul’s side. And Bo Burnham’s. Not to mention “The Crown,” “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver,” “The Queen’s Gambit,” “Saturday Night Live” and “The Mandalorian.”

Those are some of the series that won major awards on Sunday as the Creative Arts Emmys concluded with two back-to-back ceremonies: One focused mostly on unscripted and animation in the afternoon, followed by an evening event with key scripted categories.

“The Queen’s Gambit” heads into next Sunday with the most wins so far, at nine — including casting for a limited/anthology series or movie. That’s followed by “The Mandalorian” and “Saturday Night Live,” with seven each. Among networks, Netflix dominates so far with 34 wins (three programs, 31 individual), while Disney Plus has 13 (12 individual, one series). Then there’s the combo of HBO and HBO Max with 10, followed by NBC (7), Apple TV Plus (6) and VH1 (5).

The casting category can often hint at where the key races are going; last year, “Schitt’s Creek,” “Succession” and “Watchmen” all won the outstanding casting categories and went on to win their respective series categories. This year, “The Crown” won for casting in a drama; “The Queen’s Gambit” won for casting for a limited/anthology series or movie, and “Ted Lasso“ won for casting in a comedy. All three are considered series frontrunners; is this even more of a sign?

“Bo Burnham: Inside,” meanwhile, could also be gunning for the top variety special (pre-recorded) Emmy in a very crowded field. Burnham has already won for music direction, directing for a variety special and writing for a variety special.

Now on to the big show, as the marquee Primetime Emmys will be handed out on Sept. 19, live on CBS. But here’s a recap of the Sunday festivities, held in-person (with a limited audience) at the L.A. Live events deck in downtown Los Angeles. And it all starts with RuPaul.

Go ahead and put your money on another Emmy competition program win next Sunday for “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” If the Creative Arts Emmys are any indication, and they usually are, Television Academy voters are ready to give the VH1 show a fourth consecutive victory in the category.

That would tie “RuPaul’s Drag Race” with “The Voice” as the second-most honored series in the competition category since it began in 2003. Only “The Amazing Race,” with ten, has more. (It’s a bone of contention with plenty in the industry that although this category has now existed for nearly two decades, just four shows have won.)

“RuPaul’s Drag Race” is on fire, starting with RuPaul Charles, who won the host for a reality or competition program for a sixth consecutive time. (Ru had already made history by breaking the record in the category last year, this just further cements his dominance.)

Charles is also poised to make history in another way: Per his reps, he has now tied the record for the most Emmy wins by a person of color (tied with cinematographer Donald A. Morgan). If “RuPaul’s Drag Race” wins at next week’s Emmys for competition program, which we have just written is very likely, he will break the record, with 11. Read more here.

‘Ted Lasso’ Dominates Television Critics Association Awards With Three Wins, Including Program of the Year

Apple TV Plus’ “Ted Lasso” led this year’s TCA Awards, grabbing three wins including Outstanding New Program, Outstanding Achievement in Comedy and Program of the Year.

“I May Destroy You” creator, writer, executive producer and star Michaela Coel earned Individual Achievement in Drama, while Kate Winslet‘s “Mare Of Easttown” won Outstanding Achievement in Movies, Miniseries, or Specials.

Also on the board: “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver” won Outstanding Achievement in Variety, Talk or Sketch for the third consecutive year, while and Jean Smart was handed the Individual Achievement in Comedy for HBO Max’s “Hacks.”

Additionally, the Television Critics Association gave NBC sitcom “The Golden Girls” the Heritage Award, and Jean Smart was given the Career Achievement Award.

2021 TCA Award recipients are as follows:

● Individual Achievement In Drama: Michaela Coel (“I May Destroy You,” HBO)

● Individual Achievement In Comedy: Jean Smart (“Hacks,” HBO Max)

● Outstanding Achievement In News and Information: “Framing Britney Spears” (FX/FX On Hulu)

● Outstanding Achievement In Reality Programming: TIE: “Couples Therapy” (Showtime), “Deaf U” (Netflix)

● Outstanding Achievement In Youth Programming: “The Baby-Sitters Club” (Netflix)

● Outstanding Achievement In Variety, Talk Or Sketch: “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” (HBO, 2018 & 2019 Winner In Category)

● Outstanding New Program: “Ted Lasso” (Apple TV Plus)

● Outstanding Achievement In Movies, Miniseries, Or Specials: “Mare of Easttown” (HBO)

● Outstanding Achievement In Drama: “The Crown” (Netflix)

● Outstanding Achievement In Comedy: “Ted Lasso” (Apple TV Plus)

● Program of the Year: “Ted Lasso” (Apple TV Plus)

● Career Achievement Honoree: Jean Smart

● Heritage Award: “The Golden Girls” (NBC)

Variety Cover Story: Jean Smart Has Been TV’s MVP for Years. With ‘Hacks’ and ‘Mare of Easttown,’ the World Finally Noticed

I mean, who deserves to be celebrated this year more than Jean Smart? The only acceptable answer is “nobody.” As we head to Emmy weekend, it’s time to trumpet the Jean Smart Appreciation Club. I’ve been waiting MONTHS to finally unleash this story on the world, and I’m so excited to as we head to Emmy weekend. Go here and also enjoy the amazing photography by Robert Trachtenberg. An excerpt of my Variety cover story:

Jean Smart knows what people have been saying about her career lately. She just wishes they wouldn’t use the term “Jeanaissance” when doing so.

Type that into any search engine, and numerous posts pop up with the phrase, invoked as a shorthand to describe the actor’s recent string of standout performances.

The actual Jean Smart is both flattered and slightly embarrassed by this attention — to the point that perhaps we should tone down the use of that particular term (and resist using it as a hashtag). “I told somebody they’re not allowed to say it if they can’t spell it,” she jokes.

But the truth is, Smart is indeed having a peak career moment, however you want to call it. As Helen, the eccentric and stubborn live-in mother of troubled police detective Mare Sheehan (Kate Winslet) in HBO’s “Mare of Easttown,” she stole every scene she was in — including the moment when we discover Helen’s secret ice cream hiding place (an empty bag of frozen veggies).

And then there’s “Hacks,” the HBO Max comedy from Universal Television that’s a rare leading role for Smart, as iconic but past-her-prime comedian Deborah Vance, who clashes with a young writer, Ava (Hannah Einbinder), brought in to revise her stale Las Vegas residency. In an early scene-stealing moment, Deborah and Ava are stuck in the desert when their car breaks down. Deborah calls up a local news chopper to pick her up — and leaves Ava behind to take care of the car.

The role perfectly showcases Smart’s range, mixing comedy and drama with both hilarious, over-the-top scenes and deep, soul-searching moments as Deborah struggles to maintain relevance in a world that is moving on without her.

The world’s not moving on from Smart; as a matter of fact, it’s just catching up to her. She is Emmy nominated for both roles, as comedy actress (for “Hacks”) and limited series supporting actress (“Mare”). And she’s among the front-runners in both races — perhaps setting even more of a spotlight on her at the Sept. 19 ceremony.

“I certainly realize that’s not the norm for most actresses of my vintage,” she says of her recent abundance of great gigs, which includes an Emmy-nominated supporting turn for “Watchmen” in the limited series category last year.

Read more here.

SIGNED, SEALED, DELIVERED: This Week’s Promo Mailers

Spray cheese! Jiffy Pop! Bottled Coke! Moon Pies! Indeed, ABC’s new “The Wonder Years” is going all-in on the 1960s nostalgia. The new “Wonder Years” will premiere on ABC on Wednesday, Sept. 22, at 8:30 p.m. ET.

Four-time Emmy Award-winning series “The Voice” returns Monday, Sept. 20 at 8 p.m. ET. Ariana Grande joins the coaches along with returnees Kelly Clarkson, John Legend and Blake Shelton. Carson Daly is back as host.

This may be the most useful swag ever? TruTV sent a disaster preparation kit to promote “Tacoma FD,” which is back for Season 3. The comedy returned on Thursday, September 16 at 10 p.m. ET.

Peacock original series “Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol” started streaming on Thursday, Sept. 16 and will continue rolling out on a weekly basis.

Cartoonito is TV’s newest preschool block, which has launched on HBO Max and Cartoon Network. I wish my kids were still in the preschool age, but these are still quite cool items to have and share with friends who still do have young tykes. Among the shows coming to Cartoonito are “Tom and Jerry Time,” “Batwheels” and Mo Willems‘ “Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed: The Underground Rock Experience.”

Casey Bloys on More ‘Mare of Easttown,’ What’s Next for ‘White Lotus’ and Rival Gripes Over HBO/HBO Max’s Emmy Tally

HBO’s “Mare of Easttown” was one of the bright lights for HBO this Emmy season, one reason it’s probably no surprise that HBO and HBO Max chief content officer Casey Bloys hasn’t closed the door on the idea of bringing back another season of the series that was created by Brad Ingelsby and starring Kate Winslet, also an exec producer on the project.

“Brad and Kate and the producers are all talking to see if they think there’s a place to go,” Bloys revealed to Variety. “I think we’ll hear from them in a couple of weeks if they think that it’s a story worth telling, and they’re excited by. I’m excited to hear and see what they have to say.”

“Mare of Easttown” and its stars are among the frontrunners in the key limited series categories as the 73rd Emmy Awards take place on Sunday night. Boasting 16 nominations, “Mare” helped the network land a strong 94 noms (along with HBO Max’s 36, making for a combined 130 — more on that in a moment).

The show was a spring phenomenon for the premium cabler, a rarity that was universally lauded for its satisfying ending and the kind of series that competitors readily admit they wish was theirs. Another chapter of “Mare” would put it on a growing list of programs that were initially produced as one-offs but continued on as series in success, including PBS’ “Downtown Abbey” and HBO’s own “Big Little Lies.”

“Mare” could end up with the opposite fate of “Lovecraft Country,” which led HBO’s count with 18 nominations, including drama series, but did not go forward for a second season, plans for which creator Misha Green later shared on social media. Bloys is still vague on why “Lovecraft” won’t continue, but didn’t single out the futuristic idea that Green had mapped out online.

“When you make the decision to not go forward with a show, it’s usually a confluence of factors,” he said. “And that was the case here. It has to be something we think makes sense for us. In this case, we couldn’t get there …

He continues: “I don’t think it would be fair to point at any one particular thing. I think that the work Misha did, and the recognition that it got, this doesn’t change any of that.”

This is the first Emmy season for Bloys overseeing HBO and HBO Max original content, having added those duties for WarnerMedia’s streamer a little over a year ago. Given that some of HBO’s most recent Emmy darlings weren’t eligible for consideration this year, including “Succession,” “Barry,” “Westworld” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” it wasn’t a given that the pay cabler would have a successful year with voters. But newcomers including “Mare,” “Lovecraft Country” and “I May Destroy You” picked up that slack.

It was also a successful first full eligibility season for HBO Max, and those combined 130 noms narrowly put HBO/HBO Max above Netflix’s 129 in the Emmy tallies.

“It’s a fun competition,” Bloys said. “It’s hard competition. But I think ultimately, what matters is the programming and that’s not going to change regardless of you know how many nominations we get, or wins.”

But that combined 130 count caused some raised eyebrows in the industry: Rivals complained that HBO and HBO Max are two different platforms, and should be listed as such. (ABC and Hulu, also now under same management, have their tallies separated out.) TV Academy president Maury McIntyre told Variety in July that HBO and HBO Max were merged in the tally because, quite simply, they asked.

“We can only go off what we have given from a submission perspective,” he said at the time. “And that’s how we report it out. How was it reported to us in terms of its platform or its network, etc. But, it’s a question for me moving forward as to whether we should be inserting ourselves in that count.”

Bloys said that HBO and HBO Max will continue to submit their Emmy nominations as one combined entity. “To be honest, I was surprised that anybody was surprised that we would ask the TV Academy to count them together,” he said. “It’s the same management, same business affairs, same production and HBO shows air day and date on HBO Max… the whole stated purpose of HBO Max, the platform, is to allow HBO to continue to do what it does, and not have to ultimately rely on a linear cable world.”

Read more here.

Here’s What’s In This Year’s Emmy Presenters Gift Basket

Backstage Creations is behind the official “Giving Suite” at the 73rd Emmy Awards. Besides handing out luxury gifts, the lounge is also meant as a means to support the Television Academy Foundation, which guides the College Television Awards, Student Internship Program and more.

Here are items in the Giving Suite and gift bag:

● Agni- Women’s Health Box crafted with a Medical Advisory Board to replenish the micronutrients and vitamins that women most often lack, and provide them in the most bioavailable and delicious form

● Bocas Bali Luxury Water Villas- Panama’s Premiere Over-the-Water Environmentally Friendly Luxury Resort.

● Calm- Annual, premium subscription to Calm, the leading mental wellness brand with the #1 app for sleep, meditation and relaxation, designed to help you manage stress, sleep better and live a happier, healthier life.

● Empiria Fragrances- This black-owned niche fragrance house, providing classic contemporary fragrances with an African heritage, is promoting its fragrance Oshun V to embrace the power within and indulge in the bliss of a goddess.

● Espacio The Jewel of Waikiki

● Four Seasons Resort Nevis, West Indies

● G-Labs UK – Discovery Day & Night Duo Body Oil & RFID Card is the wellness concept that supports whole body well-being.

● Genusee- Genusee is the first circular economy eyewear brand made in Flint, Michigan from 15 single use plastic water bottles in Flint, Michigan.

● HP Sprocket Studio- Print high-quality 4×6” photos directly from your smartphone using the HP Sprocket Studio Instant Photo Printer.

● Minty + ReliePH- Minty + ReliePH is a clean and toxic-free brand built on naturally derived ingredients.

● Macmillan Publishers- Michaela Coel’s Personal Manifesto MISFITS.

● Never Go Alone- Edition 01 Go Mask, handmade in Italy featuring ultra-lightweight layers treated with Viroblock Antimicrobial Technology.

● Nu Skin ageLOC® LumiSpa®- The ageLOC® LumiSpa® device gives an energizing facial massage that will give you brighter, softer, and smoother skin.

● Próspero Tequila Blanco- Designed by Stella Anguiano, one of Mexico’s premier female Master Distillers, Próspero Tequila is a hand-crafted spirit

● Real Fruit Body- Coconut Shea Mango Whipped Body Cream.

● Rock n Rose Aromas- Luxury soy candles by Rock n Rose Aromas, beautifully designed and hand poured in Scotland.

● Thera Cane MAX Trigger Point Massager Self-massager that makes it easy to apply pain-relieving deep compression directly to hard, knotted “trigger points” anywhere they occur

● Tiber River- The Happiest Clean on Earth Package.

● Two Chicks Cocktails- Two Chicks Cocktails are premium ready-to-drink sparkling cocktails made with real spirits, founded and run by women.

WATCH MY SHOW: ‘Top Chef Family Style’ Producer Claire Kosloff Fills Out Our Showrunner Survey

Peacock’s “Top Chef Family Style” premiered on Sept. 9 with two episodes, and will continue with new editions every Thursday.

The family culinary competition series is hosted by Grammy winner Meghan Trainor with acclaimed chef, James Beard Award winner and best-selling cookbook author Marcus Samuelsson serving as Head Judge. Thirteen talented culinary prodigies from across the nation will compete with an adult family member in the show for the chance to be crowned champions and win $50,000. Showrunner Claire Kosloff filled out our “Watch My Show!” survey to share why you should check out “Top Chef Family Style.”

1. Sum up your show’s pitch in one sentence.
“Top Chef Family Style” is a new culinary competition featuring exceptionally talented young chefs each teamed up with an adult family member to compete for a chance to be crowned champions.

2. What’s an alternate title for your show?
“The Kids are Alright!” We set out to find the most talented culinary prodigies in America, and boy did they blow us away. You don’t have to take my word for it – Marcus Samuelsson and several other Michelin-starred chefs told us they’d hire them tomorrow…if they were legal.

3. What do we need to know before tuning in?
“Top Chef Family Style” features kids but it’s not a kiddie show. The competition is high stakes, the family dynamics are hilarious and relatable, the food is insane, and the series is a real celebration of the wonderful diversity in American cooking today.

4. Give us an equation for your show. (Blank plus blank minus blank times blank, etc.)
Family pairs plus a professional kitchen times crazy challenges minus a lifeline equals craveable television. And Meghan Trainor wears a pizza costume. What more could you want?

5. What’s the best thing someone said about your show?
Without exception, every departing chef team relayed how grateful they were to have been a part of it. When you eliminate people in a competition show and they leave happy, you know you’re doing it right. Cheesy as it sounds, we all became family on this one.

6. If you could work on any other film or series in TV, what would it be?
“Pen15.” When I watch the show I have to hit pause every 30 seconds because I’m laughing so hard. It might be the funniest series I’ve ever seen, but it’s also so raw, honest and emotionally impactful. And Anna Konkle and Maya Erskine achieving all that as thirty-somethings surrounded by a cast of junior high kids? I just want to see how they do it. That or “Downton Abbey.” I’m a sucker for a period piece. Filming high drama in a legit castle? Calgon, take me away!

7. Finish this sentence: “If you like _______, you’ll love our film.”
Cooking with family, eating with family, watching TV with family, or even just judging your family…

Parrot Analytics Study: How Streaming Is Making the Emmy Nominees More Populist

The Emmys are becoming more populist again, according to Parrot Analytics, which sees a rise in demand for the programs nominated in key comedy, drama and limited series categories. From a recent report:

With WandaVision and The Mandalorian racking up a combined 13 major Emmy nominations (and 46 overall) – and The Boys getting a nod for Best Drama – 2021 is by far the Emmy’s most crowd pleasing year of the streaming era.

The rise in both the supply and audience demand of genre programming over the last half decade – starting with Game of Thrones and Stranger Things, and currently led by WandaVision and The Mandalorian – has correlated with a rise in critical recognition of these massive global hits, as the tastes of the Television Academy and the TV consuming public draw closer and closer.

“Emmy voters have traditionally stuck with the same series and talent year after year when it comes to nominations, even if those shows or talent don’t win. But the proliferation of streaming and increase in audience demand for genre shows across new platforms have become seemingly impossible for the Academy to ignore,” said Parrot Analytics Senior Strategy Analyst Julia Alexander.

While the Emmys still acknowledge and reward abstract comedies and dramas driven by auteur directors, an increase in the supply and demand of genre entertainment has clearly impacted the series that the Television Academy is celebrating.

This data provides hard evidence to back up a trend that many analysts and reporters have suspected – that the Emmy voters and US audiences are growing closer together in what they consider to be great television.

Here are charts from Parrot, demonstrating the demand in the three key series categories:

WATCH: Awards Circuit Panel Predicts the 2021 Emmys

To discuss what to expect at this year’s ceremony, Variety‘s senior correspondent Elizabeth Wagmeister sits down with deputy TV editor Mike Schneider; senior entertainment writer Angelique Jackson; and film awards editor Clayton Davis.

The panel predicts that “Ted Lasso” and “The Crown” will be big winners of the night, along with Mj Rodriguez, who is poised to make history (again!) as the first trans actor to win a major acting award for her role in “Pose.”

Click and watch above!

And below, clock and listen below to the latest Variety Awards Circuit Podcast roundtable as Clayton, Jazz Tangcay and I also make our picks!

Variety Team TV Emmy Picks!

Check out Variety awards guru Clayton Davis’ picks here.

And now, the picks from a few more Variety staffers:

Kate Aurthur

Drama Series: “The Crown”
Comedy Series: “Ted Lasso”
Limited Series: “The Queen’s Gambit”
Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Billy Porter, “Pose”
Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Emma Corrin, “The Crown”
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Jason Sudeikis, “Ted Lasso”
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Jean Smart, “Hacks”
Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Paul Bettany, “WandaVision”
Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kate Winslet, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Michael K. Williams, “Lovecraft Country”
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series” Gillian Anderson, “The Crown”
Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Kenan Thompson, “Saturday Night Live”
Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Evan Peters, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kathryn Hahn, “WandaVision”
Competition Series: “RuPaul’s Drag Race”
Variety Sketch Series: “Saturday Night Live”
Variety Talk Series: “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”

Daniel D’Addario

Drama Series: “The Crown”
Comedy Series: “Ted Lasso”
Limited Series: “The Queen’s Gambit”
Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Josh O’Connor, “The Crown”
Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Mj Rodriguez, “Pose”
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Jason Sudeikis, “Ted Lasso”
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Jean Smart, “Hacks”
Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Leslie Odom Jr., “Hamilton”
Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Anya Taylor-Joy, “The Queen’s Gambit”
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Michael K. Williams, “Lovecraft Country”
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Gillian Anderson, “The Crown”
Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Brett Goldstein, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Evan Peters, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kathryn Hahn, “WandaVision”
Competition Series: “RuPaul’s Drag Race”
Variety Sketch Series: “A Black Lady Sketch Show”
Variety Talk Series: “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”

Caroline Framke

Drama Series: “The Crown”
Comedy Series: “Ted Lasso”
Limited Series: “The Queen’s Gambit”
Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Billy Porter, “Pose”
Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Emma Corrin, “The Crown”
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Jason Sudeikis, “Ted Lasso”
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Jean Smart, “Hacks”
Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Paul Bettany, “WandaVision”
Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Anya Taylor-Joy, “The Queen’s Gambit”
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Michael K Williams, “Lovecraft Country”
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Gillian Anderson, “The Crown”
Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Brett Goldstein, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Jean Smart, “Mare of Easttown”
Competition Series: “RuPaul’s Drag Race”
Variety Sketch Series: “Saturday Night Live”
Variety Talk Series: “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”

Cynthia Littleton

Drama Series: “The Crown”
Comedy Series: “Hacks”
Limited Series: “Mare of Easttown”
Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Regé-Jean Page, “Bridgerton”
Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Mj Rodriguez, “Pose”
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Jason Sudeikis, “Ted Lasso”
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Jean Smart, “Hacks”
Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Lin-Manuel Miranda, “Hamilton”
Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kate Winslet, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Michael K Williams, “Lovecraft Country”
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Helena Bonham Carter, “The Crown”
Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Brendan Hunt, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Evan Peters, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Jean Smart, “Mare of Easttown”
Competition Series: “Top Chef”
Variety Sketch Series: “A Black Lady Sketch Show”
Variety Talk Series: “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”

Joe Otterson

Drama Series: “Bridgerton”
Comedy Series: “Ted Lasso”
Limited Series: “I May Destroy You”
Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Regé-Jean Page, “Bridgerton”
Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Emma Corrin, “The Crown”
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Jason Sudeikis, “Ted Lasso”
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Jean Smart, “Hacks”
Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Hugh Grant, “The Undoing”
Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Anya Taylor-Joy, “The Queen’s Gambit”
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Michael K. Williams, “Lovecraft Country”
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Gillian Anderson, “The Crown”
Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Kenan Thompson, “Saturday Night Live”
Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Evan Peters, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kathryn Hahn, “WandaVision”
Competition Series: “RuPaul’s Drag Race”
Variety Sketch Series: “A Black Lady Sketch Show”
Variety Talk Series: “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver”

Jazz Tangcay

Drama Series: “Pose”
Comedy Series: “Ted Lasso”
Limited Series: “Mare of Easttown”
Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Billy Porter, “Pose”
Lead Actress in a Drama Series : Mj Rodriguez, “Pose”
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Jason Sudekis, “Ted Lasso”
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Jean Smart, “Hacks”
Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Paul Bettany, “WandaVision”
Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kate Winslet, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Michael K. Williams, “Lovecraft Country”
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series : Gillian Anderson, “The Crown”
Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Kenan Thompson, “Saturday Night Live”
Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Evan Peters, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kathryn Hahn, “WandaVision”
Competition Series: “RuPaul’s Drag Race”
Variety Sketch Series: “A Black Lady Sketch Show”
Variety Talk Series: “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”

Danielle Turchiano

Drama Series: “The Crown”
Comedy Series: “Ted Lasso”
Limited Series: “Mare of Easttown”
Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Billy Porter, “Pose”
Lead Actress in a Drama Series: MJ Rodriguez, “Pose”
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Jason Sudeikis, “Ted Lasso”
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Jean Smart, “Hacks”
Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Paul Bettany, “WandaVision”
Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kate Winslet, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Michael K. Williams, “Lovecraft Country”
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Gillian Anderson, “The Crown”
Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Kenan Thompson, “Saturday Night Live”
Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Evan Peters, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kathryn Hahn, “WandaVision”
Competition Program: “RuPaul’s Drag Race”
Variety Sketch Series: “Saturday Night Live”
Variety Talk Series: “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver”

Adam B. Vary

Drama Series: I think this is “The Crown’s” to lose, but given the strength of “The Handmaid’s Tale” this season, I wouldn’t be that surprised if it upset.
Comedy Series: “Ted Lasso”
Limited Series: Pulling for “I May Destroy You,” but recency bias tilts in favor of “Mare of Easttown.”
Lead Actor in a Drama: Billy Porter, “Pose”
Lead Actress in a Drama: I would love for MJ Rodriguez to win here, but I think Emma Corrin’s going to take it.
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Jason Sudeikis, “Ted Lasso”
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series: Jean Smart, “Hacks”
Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Lin-Manuel Miranda, “Hamilton.”
Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kate Winslet, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Michael K. Williams, “Lovecraft Country”
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Gillian Anderson, “The Crown”
Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Bowen Yang, “Saturday Night Live”
Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso”
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie: Evan Peters, “Mare of Easttown”
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie: Kathryn Hahn, “WandaVision”
Competition Series: “RuPaul’s Drag Race”
Variety Sketch Series: “Saturday Night Live”
Variety Talk Series: If any show has a shot at breaking “Last Week Tonight’s” stranglehold on this category, it’s the final season of “Conan.”

Send Me Your Questions, Comments and More!

Have a great Emmy weekend, and be sure to check Variety.com for all the coverage and the aftermath! Meanwhile, questions, suggestions and fan letters (ha!) to mschneider@variety.com, and your hot tips as well! Thanks for reading.

Best of Variety

Sign up for Variety’s Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting