2014 Emmy Nominations

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  • Publish Date: July 10, 2014

Westeros is best

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Shows with Most Nominations
1 Game of Thrones (HBO) 19
2 Fargo (FX) 18
3 American Horror Story (FX) 17
4 Breaking Bad (AMC) 16
  The Normal Heart (HBO) 16
6 Saturday Night Live (NBC) 14
7 House of Cards (Netflix) 13
8 Cosmos (Fox) 12
  Downton Abbey (PBS) 12
  Orange Is the New Black (Netflix) 12
  Sherlock (PBS) 12
  True Detective (HBO) 12

Early Thursday morning, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences announced its nominations for the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards, and HBO's hit Game of Thrones led all shows with 19 nominations for its just-concluded fourth season.

That ended American Horror Story's two-year run as the most-nominated program, though that FX series still added 17 nominations this year, just behind fellow FX program Fargo's 18. The final eight episodes of Breaking Bad added 16 nominations, while HBO movie The Normal Heart was also nominated 16 times. Netflix newcomer Orange Is the New Black also scored big, with 12 total nominations (for its first season, which streamed last year),

As always, HBO received more nominations than any other network, though its 2014 total of 99 was down a bit from last year's 108. Following behind the pay cable giant was FX, with 45 (up from 26 last year). Netflix, meanwhile, collected an impressive 31 nominations this year, up from 14 the previous year. The streaming service managed to score more nominations than more established competitors like AMC (26 nominations) and Showtime (24).

CBS led all broadcast networks with 47 nominations (down from last year's 53), while NBC, which tied CBS for the broadcast lead last year, finished second this year with 46.

Listed below are this year's Emmy nominees in each major category.

Drama nominees

Last year's winners in each category are marked with an asterisk (if re-nominated this season).

Outstanding Drama Series

SHOW NETWORK STREAM DVD/BLU-RAY
Breaking Bad * AMC Add to Netflix Queue iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
Downton Abbey PBS iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
Game of Thrones HBO   Add to Netflix Queue
House of Cards Netflix Add to Netflix Queue Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
Mad Men AMC iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue
True Detective HBO iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon

One of the many quirky things about the Emmys: it is up to the networks to determine where their shows are submitted. For example, after failing to gain much traction at the Golden Globes in the drama category, Netflix opted to submit Orange Is the New Black to Emmy voters as a comedy. (Netflix also didn't want one of its own shows stealing potential votes away from House of Cards.) HBO felt that True Detective would have a better chance as a drama series rather than a miniseries—even though it was a short, self-contained story—while FX went in the opposite direction with the longer Fargo, entering it as a miniseries.

Those decisions explain why neither Fargo nor OITNB made the cut for best drama. It doesn't explain why The Good Wife once again missed the cut, however; that acclaimed CBS series was favored to receive a nomination this year. Also missing out were buzzy Scandal, critic favorite The Americans, and newcomer Masters of Sex. Under new voting rules this year, up to 7 programs could have been nominated for best drama series, but the field ultimately remained at 6. And it was nearly identical to last year's slate, only with True Detective replacing Showtime's Homeland.

Will Breaking Bad repeat as the winner? The competition seems tougher than ever with True Detective in the field, but you probably wouldn't want to bet against it.

* Last year's winner in this category

Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Bryan Cranston Breaking Bad AMC
Jeff Daniels * The Newsroom HBO
Jon Hamm Mad Men AMC
Woody Harrelson True Detective HBO
Matthew McConaughey True Detective HBO
Kevin Spacey House of Cards Netflix

It is Cranston's sixth nomination in six tries for his role as Walter White, though after winning the first three times, he has been shut out in his two most recent attempts. Hamm now has 10 career nominations (without a win), while McConaughey just picked up his first.

Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Lizzy Caplan Masters of Sex Showtime
Claire Danes * Homeland Showtime
Michelle Dockery Downton Abbey PBS
Julianna Margulies The Good Wife CBS
Kerry Washington Scandal ABC
Robin Wright House of Cards Netflix

Danes is shooting for her third straight win here, while Margulies won the category the year before that. Caplan is a first-time nominee, and Orphan Black's Tatiana Maslany is once again missing from the field (despite being nominated for a Golden Globe and winning elsewhere).

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Jim Carter Downton Abbey PBS
Josh Charles The Good Wife CBS
Peter Dinklage Game of Thrones HBO
Mandy Patinkin Homeland Showtime
Aaron Paul Breaking Bad AMC
Jon Voight Ray Donovan Showtime

Last year's winner here was Boardwalk Empire's Bobby Cannavale, so the field is wide open, though Breaking Bad's Paul (who won in 2010 and 2012) and The Good Wife's Charles are the sentimental favorites in their last opportunities to win for their respective shows. But Dinklage has also won recently in this category (in 2011).

Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Christine Baranski The Good Wife CBS
Anna Gunn * Breaking Bad AMC
Joanne Froggatt Downton Abbey PBS
Lena Headey Game of Thrones HBO
Christina Hendricks Mad Men AMC
Maggie Smith Downton Abbey PBS

Headey is a first-time nominee, while Baranski is receiving her 12th nomination.

Guest Actor in a Drama Series

Dylan Baker The Good Wife CBS
Beau Bridges Masters of Sex Showtime
Reg E. Cathey House of Cards Netflix
Paul Giamatti Downton Abbey PBS
Robert Morse Mad Men AMC
Joe Morton Scandal ABC

Morton and Cathey are first-time nominees.

Guest Actress in a Drama Series

Kate Burton Scandal ABC
Jane Fonda The Newsroom HBO
Allison Janney Masters of Sex Showtime
Kate Mara House of Cards Netflix
Margo Martindale The Americans FX
Diana Rigg Game of Thrones HBO

Mara is a first-time nominee.

Writing for a Drama Series

Moira Walley-Beckett Breaking Bad, "Ozymandias" AMC
Vince Gilligan Breaking Bad, "Felina" AMC
David Benioff & D.B. Weiss Game of Thrones, "The Children" HBO
Beau Willimon House of Cards, "Chapter 14" Netflix
Nic Pizzolatto True Detective, "The Secret Fate Of All Of Life" HBO

"Felina" was the Breaking Bad finale, while "Ozymandias" is the episode you probably remember the most from the show's final run, and it earned Walley-Beckett her first career Emmy nomination. "The Children," meanwhile, was the expanded Game of Thrones finale, while that True Detective episode is a mid-season hour where the detectives finally catch up to Reggie Ledoux.

Directing for a Drama Series

Tim Van Patten Boardwalk Empire, "Farewell Daddy Blues" HBO
Vince Gilligan Breaking Bad, "Felina" AMC
David Evans Downton Abbey, "Episode 1" PBS
Neil Marshall Game of Thrones, "The Watchers On The Wall" HBO
Carl Franklin House of Cards, "Chapter 14" Netflix
Cary Joji Fukunaga True Detective, "Who Goes There" HBO

Comedy nominees

Last year's winners in each category are marked with an asterisk (if re-nominated this season).

Outstanding Comedy Series

The Big Bang Theory CBS iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
SHOW NETWORK STREAM DVD/BLU-RAY
Louie FX iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue
Modern Family * ABC iTunes Amazon Hulu+ Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
Orange Is the New Black Netflix Add to Netflix Queue Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
Silicon Valley HBO   Add to Netflix Queue
Veep HBO iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue

As in the best drama category, the number of potential nominees for best comedy was increased this year to 7, though only six shows received nominations. Modern Family is shooting for its fifth consecutive win in this category, a feat that would match the record set by Frasier (which also won the award for its first five seasons on the air). Orange Is the New Black and Silicon Valley are first-time nominees (for their debut seasons), while Girls and the departed 30 Rock are missing from last year's group. Though many experts predicted a nomination, Golden Globe winner Brooklyn Nine-Nine couldn't crack the list in its first season, probably losing out to surprise inclusion Silicon Valley.

By the way, Netflix's decision to enter Orange Is the New Black as a comedy paid off in a big way; the first-year show earned 12 nominations in all. That was the highest total for any comedy series this year.

Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Don Cheadle House of Lies Showtime
Louis C.K. Louie FX
Ricky Gervais Derek Netflix
Matt LeBlanc Episodes Showtime
William H. Macy Shameless Showtime
Jim Parsons * The Big Bang Theory CBS

Cheadle, C.K., LeBlanc, and Parsons are all repeats from last year, while Gervais earned his first nomination since Extras, and Macy picked up his first since a 2007 miniseries. Golden Globe winner Andy Samberg (Brooklyn Nine-Nine) is nowhere to be found, however.

Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Lena Dunham Girls HBO
Edie Falco Nurse Jackie Showtime
Julia Louis-Dreyfus * Veep HBO
Melissa McCarthy Mike & Molly CBS
Amy Poehler Parks and Recreation NBC
Taylor Schilling Orange Is the New Black Netflix

Louis-Dreyfus is seeking her third straight Emmy win (and fifth overall). Schilling is a first-time nominee, while Poehler now has eight career nominations without winning.

Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Fred Armisen Portlandia IFC
Andre Braugher Brooklyn Nine-Nine Fox
Ty Burrell Modern Family ABC
Adam Driver Girls HBO
Jesse Tyler Ferguson Modern Family ABC
Tony Hale * Veep HBO

In a potential sign that Modern Family could be losing its hold on Academy voters, only two of its stars were nominated here this year, compared to three last year and four the year before. Armisen picked up two nominations for Portlandia this year, with the other for writing the show.

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Mayim Bialik The Big Bang Theory CBS
Julie Bowen Modern Family ABC
Anna Chlumsky Veep HBO
Allison Janney Mom CBS
Kate McKinnon Saturday Night Live NBC
Kate Mulgrew Orange Is the New Black Netflix

Only Bialik, Bowen, and Chlumsky are repeats from this category last year, and the 2013 winner, Nurse Jackie's Merritt Wever, is absent. Mulgrew and McKinnon are first-time nominees, though the latter was also nominated this year for co-writing a song that appeared in SNL.

Guest Actor in a Comedy Series

Steve Buscemi Portlandia IFC
Louis C.K. Saturday Night Live NBC
Gary Cole Veep HBO
Jimmy Fallon Saturday Night Live NBC
Nathan Lane Modern Family ABC
Bob Newhart * The Big Bang Theory CBS

Louis C.K.'s hosting gig on SNL brought his 2014 nomination total to four (and his career total to an impressive 29), while Fallon was nominated for hosting both SNL and his own Tonight Show. Cole is a first-time nominee.

Guest Actress in a Comedy Series

Uzo Aduba Orange Is the New Black Netflix
Laverne Cox Orange Is the New Black Netflix
Joan Cusack Shameless Showtime
Tina Fey Saturday Night Live NBC
Natasha Lyonne Orange Is the New Black Netflix
Melissa McCarthy Saturday Night Live NBC

The three actresses from OITNB are all first-timers, while veterans Fey and McCarthy have two nominations apiece this year alone.

Writing for a Comedy Series

David Crane Episodes, "Episode 305" Showtime
Louis C.K. Louie, "So Did The Fat Lady" FX
Liz Friedman & Jenji Kohan Orange Is the New Black, "I Wasn't Ready" Netflix
Alec Berg Silicon Valley, "Optimal Tip-To-Tip Efficiency" HBO
Simon Blackwell, Tony Roche, Armando Iannucci Veep, "Special Relationship" HBO

While that episode of Louie was great, how could you not want the Emmy presenter to stand at the podium and read the title of the Silicon Valley season finale?

Directing for a Comedy Series

Paris Barclay Glee, "100" Fox
Louis C.K. Louie, "Elevator, Part 6" FX
Jodie Foster Orange Is the New Black, "Lesbian Request Denied" Netflix
Iain B. MacDonald Episodes, "Episode 309" Showtime
Gail Mancuso * Modern Family, "Vegas" ABC
Mike Judge Silicon Valley, "Minimum Viable Product" HBO

Miniseries/movie nominees

Outstanding Miniseries

American Horror Story: Coven FX iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
SHOW NETWORK STREAM DVD/BLU-RAY
Bonnie & Clyde Lifetime Add to Netflix Queue iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
Fargo FX iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
Luther BBC America Add to Netflix Queue iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
Treme HBO iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
The White Queen Starz iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon

After three years of sharing a category, TV movies and miniseries have now been split once again into separate competitions, though only for overall best program (the acting, writing, and directing categories remain combined). It's a good thing, too, since so many shows that a layman might describe as a "drama series" were entered for consideration in the miniseries category instead. In fact, three of this year's nominees—American Horror Story, Luther, and the concluded Treme—are multi-season shows, while a fourth (Fargo) could be. Fargo was actually the most-nominated miniseries this year, with a total of 18 (just ahead of AHS:Coven's 17).

Outstanding Made-for-Television Movie

Killing Kennedy National Geographic Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
MOVIE NETWORK STREAM DVD/BLU-RAY
Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight HBO Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
The Normal Heart HBO   Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
Sherlock (episode "His Last Vow") PBS Add to Netflix Queue iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon
The Trip to Bountiful Lifetime iTunes Amazon Add to Netflix Queue Amazon

The Normal Heart was this year's most-nominated TV movie, with 16 total nominations.

Lead Actor in a Movie or Miniseries

Benedict Cumberbatch Sherlock PBS
Chiwetel Ejiofor Dancing on the Edge Starz
Idris Elba Luther BBC America
Martin Freeman Fargo FX
Mark Ruffalo The Normal Heart HBO
Billy Bob Thornton Fargo FX

The number of nominees in the acting, writing, and directing categories for movies and miniseries has been upped from five to six this year. Not that this category needed the extra competition; the field here is loaded, and none of the six contenders has ever won an Emmy. Ejiofor, Ruffalo, and Thornton are first-timers, while Freeman was also nominated this year for his supporting role on Sherlock.

Lead Actress in a Movie or Miniseries

Helena Bonham Carter Burton and Taylor BBC America
Minnie Driver Return to Zero Lifetime
Jessica Lange American Horror Story: Coven FX
Sarah Paulson American Horror Story: Coven FX
Cicely Tyson The Trip To Bountiful Lifetime
Kristen Wiig The Spoils of Babylon IFC

Everyone here has been nominated at least once before, but only Lange and Tyson have won Emmys in the past.

Supporting Actor in a Movie or Miniseries

Matt Bomer The Normal Heart HBO
Martin Freeman Sherlock PBS
Colin Hanks Fargo FX
Joe Mantello The Normal Heart HBO
Alfred Molina The Normal Heart HBO
Jim Parsons The Normal Heart HBO

Parsons joins Freeman as two of several nominees who will a have a shot at multiple trophies this year, while Hanks, Mantello, and Molina are first-time nominees.

Supporting Actress in a Movie or Miniseries

Angela Bassett American Horror Story: Coven FX
Kathy Bates American Horror Story: Coven FX
Ellen Burstyn Flowers in the Attic Lifetime
Frances Conroy American Horror Story: Coven FX
Julia Roberts The Normal Heart HBO
Allison Tolman Fargo FX

Newcomer Tolman is a first-time nominee, while the others are all veterans, though only Burstyn and Bates have won Emmys.

Writing for a Movie or Miniseries

Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk American Horror Story: Coven FX
Noah Hawley Fargo FX
Neil Cross Luther BBC America
Steven Moffat Sherlock (His Last Vow) PBS
Larry Kramer The Normal Heart HBO
David Simon and Eric Overmyer Treme HBO

Directing for a Movie or Miniseries

Alfonso Gomez-Rejon American Horror Story: Coven FX
Adam Bernstein Fargo FX
Colin Bucksey Fargo FX
Stephen Frears Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight HBO
Nick Hurran Sherlock (His Last Vow) PBS
Ryan Murphy The Normal Heart HBO

Other nominees

Outstanding Variety Series

The Colbert Report * Comedy Central
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Comedy Central
Jimmy Kimmel Live ABC
Real Time With Bill Maher HBO
Saturday Night Live NBC
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon NBC

In its penultimate season, The Colbert Report will have an opportunity to run its Emmy win streak to two, after ending The Daily Show's 10-year run last year. The field is identical to last year's slate, with the exception of the title of Fallon's show. (Last year, it was Late Night with Jimmy Fallon that was nominated.) You'll see multiple nominations on this page for SNL, and that long-running show has now upped its lifetime record total to 185 nominations—over 60 ahead of its nearest competitor.

Writing for a Variety Series

The Colbert Report * Comedy Central
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Comedy Central
Inside Amy Schumer Comedy Central
Key & Peele Comedy Central
Portlandia IFC
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon NBC

Inside Amy Schumer and Key & Peele are (deserving) newcomers to this category, taking the place of last year's nominees SNL and Real Time With Bill Maher.

Outstanding Variety Special

AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute To Mel Brooks TNT
Best Of Late Night With Jimmy Fallon Primetime Special NBC
The Beatles: The Night That Changed America CBS
Billy Crystal: 700 Sundays HBO
The Kennedy Center Honors CBS
Sarah Silverman: We Are Miracles HBO

Outstanding Animated Program

Archer, "Archer Vice: The Rules Of Extraction" FX
Bob's Burgers, "Mazel Tina" Fox
Futurama, "Meanwhile" Comedy Central
South Park, "Black Friday" Comedy Central
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Manhattan Project Nickelodeon

Unlike other shows, animated programs are nominated for a single episode, rather than the entire season.

Outstanding "Structured" Reality Program

Antiques Roadshow PBS
Diners, Drive-Ins And Dives Food
MythBusters Discovery
Shark Tank ABC
Undercover Boss * CBS
Who Do You Think You Are? TLC

The reality program category has been split in two this year for the first time—actually, in three, as "Reality Competition" series (think Survivor and Amazing Race) have always had their own separate category. This "structured" category includes shows with a standard format each week—anything from MythBusters to Catfish to Antiques Roadshow. The new "unstructured" category (below) is for the depressingly large number of shows that just follow a person or group of people around with a bunch of cameras in the (usually unfulfilled) hopes that something interesting might happen—your Housewives, your Kardashians, your Wahlbergs, etc.

Outstanding "Unstructured" Reality Program

Alaska: The Last Frontier Discovery
Deadliest Catch Discovery
Flipping Out Bravo
Million Dollar Listing New York Bravo
Wahlburgers A&E
Wild Things With Dominic Monaghan BBC America

Outstanding Reality–Competition Program

The Amazing Race CBS
Dancing With the Stars ABC
Project Runway Lifetime
So You Think You Can Dance Fox
Top Chef Bravo
The Voice * NBC

Last year, The Voice ended The Amazing Race's ownership of this category, though the latter has still won 9 of the 11 awards ever given out for reality competition shows. The six nominees are identical to the 2013 list.

Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality Competition Program

Tom Bergeron Dancing With the Stars ABC
Anthony Bourdain The Taste ABC
Cat Deeley So You Think You Can Dance Fox
Heidi Klum & Tim Gunn * Project Runway Lifetime
Jane Lynch Hollywood Game Night NBC
Betty White Betty White's Off Their Rockers Lifetime

The only change from last year's group is the substitution of Lynch for American Idol's Ryan Seacrest.

More Emmy coverage

For the complete list of 2014 Emmy nominees, including the numerous technical, directing, and writing categories not listed above, visit the official Emmy website.

This year's Emmy Awards will be handed out several weeks earlier than normal, and on a Monday rather than the traditional Sunday. The August 25th ceremony will be hosted by Seth Meyers and will air live coast to coast on NBC. In the week leading up to the broadcast, we'll have a guide to expert predictions in each major category. But before that, you'll have an opportunity to make your own predictions in our annual Emmy poll; look for that beginning next week.

Want to know what TV writers are saying about this year's nominations? Check out this morning's comments from ...

Alan Sepinwall
HitFix

The system is broken. The categories don't make sense any more (and the ridiculous "Shamless" switch to comedy only paid off with William H. Macy being nominated, but not Emmy Rossum), and there's more television to watch then a voter — or, really, any human — has time for.

James Poniewozik
Time

The awards opened the books to some deserving new shows and performers this year–Fargo, Orange Is the New Black, Silicon Valley–but overall the inclusions and omissions in the major categories suggested that Emmy voters have a two- or three-year DVR backlog they're still catching up on.

Josef Adalian
Vulture

Today's nominations are a nice demonstration of progressiveness from a voting bloc that, just a decade ago, somehow failed to award a single nomination to The Wire, a series considered by many to be TV's greatest ever. And yet, look more closely at most of the "breakthrough" nominations revealed today, and something else quickly becomes clear: Emmy voters may be okay with alternative distribution methods, but they're still very much in love with Big Names. Star power remains Emmy's everything.

Brian Lowry
Variety

The abundance of quality programming and expanding number of options has created a logjam for the nighttime Emmy Awards, where the celebration over which shows earned nomination will inevitably give way to plenty of second-guessing about those that were overlooked.

James Hibberd
Entertainment Weekly

How many different characters does Tatiana Maslany have to play to score an Emmy nomination?

Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

If you thought many of last year's Emmy winners were bizarre choices ... you ain't seen nothin' yet.

Kevin Fallon
The Daily Beast

Lazy is the best way to describe a slate of nominees that seems simply rubber-stamped from the batch of contenders from the past two years, an alarming number of which were shows and performers that were critically ravaged after depressingly weak seasons. More infuriating, those groan-worthy nominees took the place of what are universally considered the best series and performances on television, which were maddeningly snubbed.

Matthew Gilbert
Boston Globe

No snub was more surprising — and absurd and silly and fickle — than the absence of a nomination for Tatiana Maslany. This is a snub of epic proportions.

Slate
Willa Paskin

The Emmys are doing what they can to try and please as many people as possible. And you know what happens to people-pleasers. ... The Emmys are now generally sophisticated enough that getting exercised about them feels worth it. And that, more than anything, is a reflection of just how much excellent television the Emmys has to choose from.

Mike Hale
The New York Times

You know that the Emmy nominations have gone very much as predicted when the biggest surprise among the major categories is "Downton Abbey."

Tim Goodman
The Hollywood Reporter

This is not one of those years when Emmy voters get forgiveness on their oversights simply because they seemed to be progressive in a few categories. That's because the rubber-stamping seemed especially gratuitous and the Big Mistakes seemed more prominent and damning.

Tim Surette
TV.com

This year's nominations are some of the laziest and most boring selections I've seen in a long time, and that's probably because there's so much exciting television in the world right now.

What's your take?

What do you think of this year's nominations? Let us know in the comments section below.

Comments (3)

  • Nareth  

    I don't understand why The Walking Dead has yet to be nominated for any acting or best show emmys!!! The show, while gory and gruesome to some viewers is easily my favorite TV show. The writing is superb, the acting is very good and should at least win a few awards. Yes, they've been nodded at for special effects, but come on, this show is not just a gut fest(like most people think it is). The writing focuses on great topics like what makes us human, and how do we keep our humanity, etc. WHY ARE THEY NOT ROLLING IN EMMYS!!!!

  • pescetarian  

    The game is on...

    This is the year of the thrones.

  • gustav71  

    Well, can we say that critics metascore about those terrible nominations is a 25?

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