Throughout the week, we’re revealing the thoughts and preferences of voting members of the Television Academy in our annual Emmy Confidential series. Today, a long-time member of the Television Academy tells all!
We’re finally down to the final week before the major Emmys are revealed on Monday, September 17. With all of the campaigning, advocating, and bingeing behind us, Team ADTV had the opportunity to talk to some voters to see what was going through their minds as they cast their vote. This is what we call our Emmy Confidential series.
In this installment of our annual Emmy Confidential series, we spoke with a longtime member of the Television Academy’s actor branch. Having been a member of the Television Academy for several years this actor makes a yearly commitment to screen all of the submitted material. This year they are rooting for The Americans to make a huge splash in the drama categories. They are also annoyed by creative teams that take too many creative liberties with true stories like The Assassination of Gianni Versace and Mindhunter while they are particularly impressed with certain shows that take the time accurately portray mental disorders accurately like with Killing Eve and The Sinner.
Outstanding Drama Series – The Americans
“I voted for The Americans. I feel like we are in a real life version of what’s going on in this show. It’s like a microcosm of what could be going on under our noses! A win for the show would be cool. I was a little disappointed in the ending and found it too cheeky. I didn’t believe it would happen like that. Other than that I’ve really enjoyed it and been a fan of the show since the beginning. The show needs to be honored, and I would love to see it upset here.”
Lead Actor in a Drama Series – Matthew Rhys, The Americans
“I voted for Matthew Rhys this year. I tried to vote for The Americans almost everywhere I could. Rhys is a great actor, and this is his year. I also liked Jason Bateman’s performance and considered voting for him but in the end I voted for Rhys because it is his year.”
Lead Actress in a Drama Series – Sandra Oh, Killing Eve
“This was a tough category for me that ultimately came down to Keri Russell and Sandra Oh. There’s something genuine about Keri Russell as an actress but in the end I voted for Oh. I was really drawn to the material as a whole and I had a compelling conversation with her at an event for the show, and it only helped me love her performance more.
Phoebe Waller-Bridge writes Killing Eve so well. When I first watched the show, I had no idea it was written by the same woman that wrote Fleabag, and I was blown away. Her ability to write both characters is astounding. It’s such a well-crafted show and I love her writing. I hope she wins in her category.”
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series – Mandy Patinkin, Homeland
“This category came down to a process of elimination, and I ended up voting for Mandy Patinkin. Patinkin himself is obnoxious but he is a strong actor. I also voted for his co-star [F. Murray Abraham] in the guest acting category.”
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series – Yvonne Strahovski, The Handmaid’s Tale
“I voted for the commander’s wife in The Handmaid’s Tale [Yvonne Strahovski]. In this category, I knew I wanted to vote for someone from The Handmaid’s Tale and out of the three options it was her performance I enjoyed the most. Between the first and second season her performance changed so much, and I was completely lost in it. She did her job beautifully.”
Outstanding Comedy Series – The Marvelous Maisel
“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel is delightful, charming, and it comes from a newer network like Amazon Prime. Somebody had told me I needed to watch it, and I just wasn’t interested but a couple weeks later I was bored and deicded to give it a try. I watched the entire first season in one sitting and was completely won over. The show is well-written and is female oriented. There are so many pluses to this show.
I admire the craziness of Atlanta but don’t find it funny. Throughout the episode ‘Teddy Perkins’ I was desperately trying to figure out who was playing that man and had no idea it was Donald Glover!”
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series – Anthony Anderson, Black-ish
“I voted for Anthony Anderson. He’s never won before, and I really want him to have an Emmy. I love Black-ish as a whole because even though it’s about this specific family it truly is an American show that we can all relate to. The things that happen on this show can happen to any family, and they are things that happen in the real world. Anthony himself is a very nice person and on the show I enjoy his silly character.
Bill Hader was wonderful on Barry as this hitman turned actor. I wanted him to win something so I voted for him in the guest actor category.”
Lead Actress in a Comedy – Allison Janney, Mom
“I voted for Allison Janney. This year I felt like I owed Allison my vote after years of voting for Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Allison is hysterical in this role and we don’t know how much longer Mom will actually be on the air. Rachel Brosnahan on the other hand is also great, but she has only been around for a little while. She will have plenty of future opportunities to win.”
Supporting Actor in a Comedy – Henry Winkler, Barry
“I voted for Henry Winkler, I mean how could I not? He was perfect as an acting coach. He’s also worked in this industry for over four decades and has never won an Emmy. He’s one of the nicest people in the business. I met him years ago and he went above and beyond to be kind to me, and I’ll never forget that. I would love to see him win.
The other nominees are all great as well. Alec Baldwin as Trump is hysterical. Keenan Thompson is always funny. Louie Anderson is well-respected although I’ve heard new grumblings about the fact that he portrays a woman and that it took the role away from a heavy-set woman. I don’t necessarily agree with that and it shows we are becoming too restrictive. Tony Shaloub is always funny although when I met him at an event this year he told me I didn’t need to vote for him. So why would I vote for someone who doesn’t seem to want it?”
Supporting Actress in a Comedy – Alex Borstein, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
“I voted for Alex Borstein even though she seemed to have the same attitude as Tony Shaloub. I found her character of Susie to be absolutely hysterical. When you first meet her you don’t know what to think. I also voted for her in the voice-over category.
The category was filled with too many SNL women. I loved Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones is funny. I’m not that familiar with Aidy Bryant. I decided to stay away from the controversy with Roseanne and not vote for Laurie Metcalf. I don’t find Megan Mullally all that funny. Her character is haughty and she’s kind of like that in real life so is that really acting?”
Outstanding Limited Series – The Alienist
“I voted for The Alienist. The show was bizarre and weird in its own way but it worked. They tried to have a positive female character for the era and over the course of the season they succeeded. These were very flawed characters and it made the show interesting to watch.
This was the year of true events being portrayed on television and some worked more than others. I’m familiar with the Andrew Cunanan case and for the most part the limited series was accurate with the exception of Cunanan’s actual death. They completely made that up and I can’t support that.
I love Benedict Cumberbatch but I just couldn’t get into Patrick Melrose. I wanted to vote for Genius but in the end it didn’t rise up to the greatest caliber for me.”
Lead Actor in a Limited Series/TV Movie – Jeff Daniels, The Looming Tower
“I went back and forth between John Legend and Jeff Daniels. In the end I voted for Daniels because I really enjoyed The Looming Tower. I was very moved by it and the ending broke my heart. There’s something about Jeff that I really like and I don’t know how to explain it because he’s not that friendly.”
Lead Actress in a Limited Series/TV Movie – Jessica Biel, The Sinner
“I voted for Jessica Biel. I had a conversation with her at an event and she mentioned how she took the time to speak with a forensic psychologist and that really impressed me. She spoke to a lot of people trying to get her portrayal of PTSD right. The fact that she cared so much about that made all the difference and I wanted to reward that.
When I voted I thought Sarah Paulson had won before for American Horror Story. If I had known she hadn’t that might have changed my vote. I didn’t buy Dern’s portrayal of PTSD as much. Regina King is a great actress and she was everywhere campaigning for the award.”
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series/TV Movie – John Leguizamo, Waco
“I voted for John Leguizamo from Waco. It was an interesting story that I enjoyed so I went with him by default. I was disappointed that Bill Camp wasn’t nominated for The Looming Tower. He is such a good performer and so much better than his nominated costar [Michael Stuhlbarg]. I also would have voted for the father [Jon Jon Briones] from The Assassination of Gianni Versace if he had been nominated.”
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series/TV Movie – Judith Light, The Assassination of Gianni Versace
“I broke my Versace rule and voted for Judith Light. She is a wonderful actress and such a warm person in general. I found her to be close enough to Marilyn Miglin that I could accept it even if she visually looked nothing like her. I like Sara Bareilles but this is an award for acting, not for singing. Adina Porter from American Horror Story had a really interesting role but in the end I want to see Judith win. Penelope Cruz is a good actress but I don’t think she was true to Donatella.”