Emmy Predictions: Lead Actor in a Limited Series or TV Movie – Can Anyone Top Michael Keaton in ‘Dopesick’?

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UPDATED: May 12, 2022

2022 EMMYS PREDICTIONS:
OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTOR IN A LIMITED SERIES OR TV MOVIE

AWARDS PREDICTION COMMENTARY:

Early word is very promising for Colin Firth’s work on HBO’s “The Staircase” alongside Toni Collette, which could be a latecomer to a race that has been dominated by Michael Keaton’s work in Hulu’s “Dopesick.”

Oscar Isaac will be pulling double duty with Marvel’s “Moon Knight” and HBO’s “Scenes from a Marriage,” the latter of which is a stronger awards play, given the competition in this tight race.

Established and respected veterans are in the mix such as Ben Foster in”The Survivor” by Oscar-winner Barry Levinson, the only television movie with the best chance at multiple awards recognition (at the moment).

Samuel L. Jackson was honored with an Honorary Oscar earlier this year, and he could add an Emmy to hit for his passion project, “The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey” on Apple TV+.

Other big names eyeing consideration are Andrew Garfield (“Under the Banner of Heaven”), Sebastian Stan (“Pam and Tommy”), Sean Penn (“Gaslit”) and Tom Hiddleston (“The Essex Serpent”).

Read more: Variety’s Awards Circuit Emmys Predictions Hub

The Emmy eligibility period runs from June 1, 2021, to May 31, 2022. The deadline for entering programs for Primetime programming and uploading all entry materials is on May 12, 2022, at 6:00 PM PT.

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 full television awards season calendar is linked here.

2021 category winner: Ewan McGregor, “Halston” (Netflix)

ALL AWARDS CONTENDERS AND RANKINGS:

. - Credit: Courtesy of Marvel Studios
. - Credit: Courtesy of Marvel Studios

Courtesy of Marvel Studios

AND THE PREDICTED NOMINEES ARE:

RANK

CONTENDER

SERIES

NETWORK

1

Michael Keaton

“Dopesick”

Hulu

2

Colin Firth

“The Staircase”

HBO/HBO Max

3

Andrew Garfield

“Under the Banner of Heaven”

FX

4

Ben Foster

“The Survivor”

HBO/HBO Max

5

Oscar Isaac

“Scenes from a Marriage”

HBO/HBO Max

6

Sebastian Stan

“Pam and Tommy”

Hulu

NEXT IN LINE

7

Samuel L. Jackson

“The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey”

Apple TV+

8

Jared Leto

“WeCrashed”

Apple TV+

9

Himesh Patel

“Station Eleven”

HBO/HBO Max

10

Joshua Jackson

“Dr. Death”

Peacock

OTHER TOP-TIER CONTENDERS

11

Oscar Isaac

“Moon Knight”

Disney+

12

Paul Bettany

“A Very British Scandal”

Amazon Prime Video

13

Sean Penn

“Gaslit”

Starz

14

Tom Hiddleston

“The Essex Serpent”

Apple TV+

15

Sam Elliott

“1883”

Paramount+

16

Liev Schreiber

“Ray Donovan: The Movie”

Showtime

17

Jon Bernthal

“We Own This City”

HBO/HBO Max

18

Jamie Dornan

“The Tourist”

HBO/HBO Max

19

Joseph Gordon-Levitt

“Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber”

Showtime

20

Will Ferrell

“The Shrink Next Door”

Apple TV+

ALSO IN CONTENTION

21

Tony Goldwyn

“The Hot Zone: Anthrax”

National Geographic

22

Paul Rudd

“The Shrink Next Door”

Apple TV+

23

Ben Whishaw

“This is Going to Hurt”

BBC One

24

Jaden Michael

“Colin in Black and White”

Netflix

25

Clive Owen

“Impeachment: American Crime Story”

FX

26

David Thewlis

“Landscapers”

HBO/HBO Max

27

Hamish Linklater

“Midnight Mass”

Netflix

28

Jeremy Renner

“Hawkeye”

Disney+

29

David Oyelowo

“The Girl Before”

HBO/HBO Max

30

Bruce Davison

“The Manor”

Amazon Prime Video

UNRANKED CONTENDERS

Charlie Day

“I Want You Back”

Amazon Prime Video

Clive Owen

“Lisey’s Story”

Apple TV+

Eugenio Derbez

“The Valet”

Hulu

Finn Wittrock

“American Horror Story: Double Feature”

FX

Harry Connick Jr.

“Annie Live!”

NBC

John Cameron Mitchell

“Joe vs. Carole”

Peacock

John Lithgow

“Live in Front of a Studio Audience: ‘The Facts of Life’ and ‘Diff’rent Strokes'”

ABC

Jon Stewart

“Live in Front of a Studio Audience: ‘The Facts of Life’ and ‘Diff’rent Strokes'”

ABC

Kevin Hart

“True Story”

Netflix

Kevin Hart

“Live in Front of a Studio Audience: ‘The Facts of Life’ and ‘Diff’rent Strokes'”

ABC

Louis Patridge

“Pistol”

FX

Martin Freeman

“Angelyne”

Peacock

Miles Teller

“The Offer”

Paramount+

Sean Bean

“Time”

BritBox

Stephen Graham

“Help”

Channel 4

Tom Riley

“The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window”

Netflix

Will Poulter

“Why Didn’t The Ask Evans?”

BritBox

William Jackson Harper

“Love Life”

HBO/HBO Max

Zach Braff

“Moonshot”

HBO/HBO Max

Zach Braff

“Cheaper by the Dozen”

Disney+

AWARDS CATEGORY HISTORY (Lead Actor Limited)

The Primetime Emmy Awards, better known simply as the Emmys, is television's most prestigious artistic award. There are many records held for both wins and nominations in the near eight decades.

For wins: This category has had many rule changes and inceptions in its history, but it's worth noting that Laurence Olivier has the most wins in this category, with four with Peter Ustinov behind him with three.

For nominations: Hal Holbrook has the most nominations in this category of any actor with seven, while Benedict Cumberbatch and Laurence Olivier follow close behind with six apiece.

2022 Primetime Emmy Awards Predictions

2022 Creative Arts Emmys Predictions

  • Outstanding Television Movie

  • Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series

  • Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series

  • Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series

  • Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series

  • Outstanding Reality Host

  • Outstanding Directing for a Variety Series

  • Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series

  • Outstanding Directing for a Variety Special

  • Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special

  • Outstanding Animated Program

  • Outstanding Short Form Animated Program

  • Outstanding Voice-Over Performance

  • Outstanding Narrator

  • Outstanding Structured Program

  • Outstanding Unstructured Program

  • Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Series

  • Outstanding Documentary Special

  • Outstanding Documentary Filmmaking

  • Outstanding Hosted Nonfiction Series or Special

  • Outstanding Main Title Design

  • Outstanding Main Title Theme Music

  • Outstanding Music for Series

  • Outstanding Music for Limited Series

  • Outstanding Music and Lyrics

  • Outstanding Music Supervision

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.

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