‘SNL,’ ‘Westworld’ lead nominations
69th Primetime Emmys to be presented in September
“Saturday Night Live,’’ powered by madcap skits skewering the Trump administration, earned 22 Emmy Award nominations, including bids for Alec Baldwin’s florid portrayal of the president and Melissa McCarthy’s manic, gender-busting take on press secretary Sean Spicer.
The long-running NBC variety show tied with HBO’s sci-fi drama “Westworld,’’ which also earned 22 bids on Thursday, to jointly top the field for the 69th Primetime Emmys to be presented in September.
Netflix big-shouldered the best drama category with three contenders, “The Crown, ‘’House of Cards” and ‘’Stranger Things,” a best-ever total for streaming as its platforms grow in strength as competitors to broadcast and cable.
“Feud: Bette and Joan,’’ about the epic clash of Hollywood divas Bette Davis and Joan Crawford,” reaped 18 nominations, including for stars Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon. Other big-screen stars making a splash on the small screen were Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon, nominated for ‘’Big Little Lies,” which is competing with ‘’Feud” for best limited series.
“Veep,’’ the most-nominated comedy with 17 bids, has a chance for its third consecutive top comedy trophy. Star Julia Louis-Dreyfus has the chance to build on her record of most wins for a lead comedy actress: She has five for “Veep’’ and one for “New Adventures of Old Christine.’’
Emmy voters showed their willingness to recognize new comic voices as well as diversity. Donald Glover’s freshman “Atlanta’’ earned a best comedy bid, as did “Master of None,’’ starring Aziz Ansari, and “blackish,’’ and the TV academy noted that the majority of nominated writers are people of colour.
But there was room for an old favourite, “Modern Family,’’ although it earned only a handful of bids besides best comedy, including for Ty Burrell in the supporting actor category. “Silicon Valley’’ and “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’’ round out the best comedy ranks.
Samantha Bee, who broke into the late-night male domain with “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee,’’ earned a variety talk show nomination for her efforts. Her competitors include Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel, John Oliver, James Corden and Bill Maher.
The drama field opened up with the absence of HBO’s dominant “Game of Thrones,’’ which aired outside the eligibility window for Emmy consideration this year. It won 12 Emmys last year, including its second consecutive best drama award.
Newcomers were ready to step in, including breakout series “This Is Us.’’ It received 11 nods, including the first bestdrama series for a network show since “The Good Wife’’ in 2011. NBC’s intricately told story of an extended family, a hit with viewers and critics, also earned bids for Sterling K. Brown and Milo Ventimiglia, who are competing with each other in the best actor category.
Shemar Moore, from left, Television Academy Chairman and CEO, Hayma Washington, and Anna Chlumsky attend the 69th Emmy Nominations Announcement at the Television Academy’s Wolf Theatre at the Saban Media Center on Thursday in the NoHo Arts District in Los Angeles. The Emmys are scheduled to air Sept. 17 on CBS, with Stephen Colbert as host.