Jalal takes a look at the recently released Emmy nominating ballots and determines their potential impact on the Emmy nominees.
Every year on the day voting for Emmy nominees begins, the Television Academy makes PDF versions of the Emmy nominating ballots available on their official website. These Emmy nominating ballots show the final decisions of who will be submitted in what category, who was snubbed by their own network/show runner for a nomination, what episodes were submitted for consideration in certain categories, and what surprises might pop up on nominations morning. Looking through the nominating ballots is the perfect tool for anyone wanting to predict the Emmys since you’ll be looking through the same documents and be able to put yourself in the mind of the voter.
Looking through the 2016 Emmy nominating ballots, these are the things that stand out at first glance:
- Funny or Die submitted their 50 minute parody video Donald Trump’s The Art of The Deal in the TV Movie race and Johnny Depp in the Lead Actor in a Limited Series/TV Movie race.
- Aidy Bryant’s Vimeo short Darby Forever was submitted in the TV Movie race and Aidy Bryant and Retta were submitted in the Limited Series/TV Movie acting races.
- Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill was submitted by HBO as a special class program and not as a TV movie as most were expecting.
- The 25-hour marathon of the first season of Angie Tribeca was submitted as a Variety Special.
- Four puppeteers (Bill Barretta, David Goelz, Eric Jacobson, and Steve Whitmire) have been submitted in the Lead Actor in a Comedy Series category for their work on The Muppets.
- Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein were moved up from the supporting race to the lead race for their starring roles on Portlandia.
- James Earl Jones and Angela Lansbury were not submitted in the Limited Series/TV Movie acting categories for their performances in the filmed stage version of Driving Miss Daisy.
- Downton Abbey star Laura Carmichael was submitted in the Lead Drama Actress category for the first time as opposed to her usual supporting actress submission.
- Rob James-Collier was not submitted for Downton Abbey’s final season in any category.
- Kristen Schaal was submitted as a supporting actress for her performance in The Last Man on Earth, as opposed to her lead submission last year.
- Amy Landecker was submitted in the supporting actress race for Transparent even though some were predicting/suggesting she go lead for season two.
- Tina Fey and Amy Poehler were submitted as a duo in the Guest Actress in a Comedy race for their hosting gig on Saturday Night Live, making them the first pair to be nominated as a duo in an acting race.
- Saturday Night Live did not submit Julia Louis-Dreyfus but did submit Miley Cyrus and Ariana Grande.
- Three time nominee Diana Rigg was not submitted for her work on Game of Thrones.
- In the show description for RuPaul’s Drag Race on the Reality Competition ballot they describe the show using a genitalia joke (we’ll have to wait and see if that woos over voters).
The Emmy nominating ballots are also a good indicator of which show strategized their directing and writing submissions well and which shows over-submitted and risk being snubbed.
- The American Crime Story episode Marcia, Marcia, Marcia was submitted in the writing category but not for its directing. Instead Ryan Murphy was submitted for directing the pilot.
- Black-ish, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Masters of None, Bates Motel, Mr. Robot, Downton Abbey, Game of Thrones, The Good Wife, The Leftovers, and The Americans all strategically submitted one episode into the writing categories.
- The shows that submitted a moderate amount of episodes into the writing categories are Veep (3), Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (2), Transparent (3), Orange Is The New Black (3),
- The shows that over-submitted into the writing races and might have hurt their chances of being nominated are Better Call Saul (8), Homeland (9), Modern Family (8), House of Cards (7), Vinyl (6), Broad City (4), and Girls (6).
- The shows that strategically nominated one episode for directing are Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and Masters of None.
- The shows that only submitted a couple of episodes for consideration in directing are Silicon Valley (2), Transparent (2), Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (3), Veep (3), and Downton Abbey (3).
- Shows that over-submitted in directing are Better Call Saul (9), Black-ish (5), Girls (6), Game of Thrones (5), Homeland (6), The Good Wife (5), House of Cards (4), Robot (5), and Vinyl (7).
The nominating ballots also show how many people were submitted in each category and some categories are significantly more crowded than others:
Comedy Series – 96
Drama Series – 151
Limited Series – 26
TV Movie – 29
Lead Actor in a Comedy – 77
Lead Actor in a Drama– 109
Lead Actor in a Limited Series/TV Movie – 52
Lead Actress in a Comedy– 64
Lead Actress in a Drama – 81
Lead Actress in a Limited Series/TV Movie – 30
Supporting Actor in a Comedy– 202
Supporting Actor in a Drama – 388
Supporting Actor in a Limited Series/TV Movie – 105
Supporting Actress in a Comedy – 192
Supporting Actress in a Drama – 279
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series/TV Movie – 79
Guest Actor in a Comedy – 127
Guest Actor in a Drama – 127
Guest Actress in a Comedy– 107
Guest Actress in a Drama – 94
So readers, go take a look yourself and browse through nominating ballots. How many times did you notice a Zach Woods or Fred Armisen submission?