Thursday, May 23, 2024

Oscar Darlings Who May Dominate This Emmy Awards Season

Let’s be honest: By now, we know, for the most part, how members of the Television Academy vote. Each year, it feels as though only a handful of shows dominate the nominations while plenty of great candidates are left out. Sure, there’s a chance that voters might put in the work to watch everything, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they will. With the strikes affecting how many shows return in time for Emmy season, heavy hitters such as “House of the Dragon” won’t make a dent in any of the races. If our first reveal of our current Emmy nomination predictions showed us one thing, it’s that we will see an overabundance of this year is Oscar-winning (and nominated) performers showing up in the Emmy acting categories. Here are some of the many Academy Award-caliber actors looking to add an Emmy to their shelves this awards season.

In the Drama categories, a number of former Academy Award winners are competing for nominations and possibly wins. Academy Award-winner Gary Oldman (“Darkest Hour“) is currently the de facto frontrunner for Best Actor in a Drama Series. The critically acclaimed star of the Apple TV spy series “Slow Horses has only been nominated once for an Emmy in his illustrious career (A guest appearance on Friends back in 2001). Now, with less competition, Oldman feels like a sure-fire lock for his second Emmy award nomination. “Slow Horses will probably have a larger presence at this year’s Emmys, possibly earning multiple acting nominations and a series nomination as well. Donald Glover might give Oldman some competition for “Mr. and Mrs. Smith, especially if Amazon plays their cards right with their campaign. Oldman, at the least, can be considered overdue, as well as playing a fun character who voters might find enjoyable. The biggest question is if they have, in fact, tuned in to watch “Slow Horses finally after virtually ignoring it for its previous seasons. Another Oscar nominee, Colin Farrell (“The Banshees Of Inisherin“), could earn a nomination for the new Apple TV series “Sugar. The show, which has only aired a few episodes so far, could garner attention for someone as famous as Farrell. This depends on how the show is received overall and if Apple is willing to split the attention in their campaign, especially when they have a multitude of priorities in various categories.

When it comes to Best Actress in a Drama Series, this year’s contenders include multiple women who previously graced their presence at the Dolby Theater. Surprisingly, Imelda Staunton (who was nominated for Best Actress in 2005 for “Vera Drake”) hasn’t been nominated for an Emmy since 2013. After missing a nomination for her first season on Netflix’s “The Crown, it makes sense that she will be acknowledged for the show’s sixth and final season. Despite a stark decline in critical reception, “The Crown is expected to make a big splash on Emmy nomination morning.

Academy Award winner Reese Witherspoon is no stranger to the Emmys. After winning an Emmy for producing “Big Little Lies (which won Best Limited Series), she seems to keep popping up. She was previously nominated for the second season of the Apple TV series “The Morning Show, and has a strong chance of getting nominated again. However, she’ll most likely be nominated alongside her castmate (and previous Emmy winner) Jennifer Anniston, who is contending for the win in Best Actress for a Drama Series.

However, if an Academy Award-winning (or nominated) actress has a shot at winning in this category, it would be Emma Stone (“La La Land“). The actress, who just won her second Best Actress Oscar for 2023’s Poor Things, will undoubtedly try to channel as much goodwill as she can for her performance in the new Showtime series “The Curse. Her marvelous performance rivals her recent Oscar-winning work, yet it’s difficult to see voters in the Television Academy championing this type of role. Even though “The Curse is one of the best series in the last year, it’s a challenging show to digest. Stone’s character is brilliant and one of the most execrable characters onscreen in recent memory. Her chances are helped thanks to a weak year overall, especially in the drama categories, so her nomination seems secure. As for a win, that will depend on whether the Television Academy will go to bat for “The Curse as a whole.There’s a slew of Oscar-caliber actresses contending for Best Actress in a Limited Series, Anthology, or Television Movie. Two-time Academy Award nominee Naomi Watts feels like one of the many Oscar-nominated actresses in the ensemble of FX’s “Feud: Capote vs. The Swans who could get nominated. If a former Academy Award winner is taking home the Emmy for this category, it would be between Jodie Foster (who won for “The Accused and for “The Silence of the Lambs“) and Brie Larson (who won for “Room“). Foster, who has previously been nominated twice for an Emmy in different categories, could be helped by the “overdue narrative, just like Oldman. What could hold her back is the less-than-stellar reception to “True Detective: Night Country. That being said, the show was a ratings juggernaut, and she was easily the best part of the latest season. Larson (a previous Emmy winner) is contending for the Apple TV series “Lessons in Chemistry, and seems far more like a traditional Emmy winner. It’s clearly the best work she’s delivered in years, and she has been a presence in every precursor so far leading up to the Emmys. It’s too early in the season to tell who’s winning here, but for now, it’s a close race (unless “Shogun’s” Anna Sawai becomes a spoiler).

Out of all the previous Academy Award nominees and winners contending this year, nothing feels as locked as Robert Downey Jr. winning his first primetime Emmy for HBO’s “The Sympathizer. The Emmy-nominated and highly sought-after actor just won his first Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in the Best Picture-winning film “Oppenheimer. Like many people who felt it was his time to win an Oscar, they may now feel the same energy with him being within reach of winning the Emmy for Best Supporting Actor in a Limited Series, Anthology, or Television Movie. The only other person realistically contending for a win in this category is Jonathan Bailey for Showtime’s “Fellow Travelers. Despite Bailey’s surprise win at Critics Choice, Downey Jr. will probably sweep any momentum under his feet. “The Sympathizer (which just aired its first two episodes) is being showered with critical praise and could be HBO’s number one priority in the limited series categories. Downey’s performance is also incredibly impressive, as he’s playing a variety of characters in the Park Chan-cook-created miniseries. Not to mention, it’d be shocking if voters in the Television Academy weren’t clamoring for Downey to come on stage and deliver what would be another terrific speech. As with his Oscar win, it feels like all the dominos are falling into place.

There are still plenty of other Academy Award nominees and winners that haven’t been mentioned who may not be contending for wins but can still get nominated, such as Jonathan Pryce, Leslie Manville, John Hawkes, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Diane Lane, Meryl Streep, Kristin Wiig, and Chloë Sevigny. Usually, the Emmy Awards is a star-studded night for the most prominent television stars, but this year feels a little different.

Which former Oscar winner or nominee do you hope will receive an Emmy nomination? Do you think Oscar success can help actors at other award shows such as the Emmys? Please let us know in the comments section below or on Next Best Picture’s Twitter account.

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Giovanni Lago
Giovanni Lago
Devoted believer in all things cinema and television. Awards Season obsessive and aspiring filmmaker.

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