Netflix and “The Mandalorian” show the might of streamers.
Netflix dominated the 72nd Emmy Award nominations on Tuesday, breaking the record for the most nominations ever, and a newcomer to the streaming universe, Disney+, scored a nomination in a big category for “The Mandalorian” in yet another sign of the growing importance of digital technology to Hollywood.
A longtime Emmy champion, HBO, remained a force: “Watchmen,” the cable network’s innovative spin on a difficult-to-adapt superhero graphic novel, led all shows with 26 nominations. Amazon’s “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” an Emmy favorite, came in second, with 20.
Netflix smashed the record for most nominations of any network, studio or streaming platform, with 160, breaking the record set last year by HBO. HBO came in second, with 107 nominations. The next closest competitor, NBC, had 47.
Netflix and HBO have waged hard-fought battles against each other at the Emmys in recent years, and the Tuesday announcement marked the second time that Netflix had bested HBO in the total number of nominations. The two entertainment giants are these days competing even more directly, now that HBO’s parent company, AT&T, unveiled the ambitious streaming service HBO Max in May.
With an Emmy stalwart, “Game of Thrones,” finally out of the competition after a nearly decade-long run, the best drama race was open to newcomers and other programs that have yet to win big. HBO’s operatic family saga, “Succession,” Netflix’s more-popular-by-the-day crime series “Ozark” and Netflix’s lush period piece about Queen Elizabeth II, “The Crown,” all scored nominations in the category.
“The Handmaid’s Tale,” the Hulu show that was voted best drama in 2017, also received a nomination, although some critics were cool to its third season, which premiered more than a year ago.
And there was a surprise nod in the best drama category for the Disney+ series, “The Mandalorian,” the Baby Yoda sensation that made its debut on the Walt Disney Company’s multibillion-dollar streaming service in November 2019. The “Star Wars” spinoff scored 15 nominations overall.
The top show for Apple — another recent entrant in the streaming wars — was the AppleTV+ series “The Morning Show.” The big-budget backstage drama received acting nominations for Jennifer Aniston, Billy Crudup, Mark Duplass, Martin Short and Steve Carell.
On the comedy side, Pop TV’s “Schitt’s Creek,” which has attracted a wider audience since it started streaming on Netflix, received 15 nominations for its final season.
Amazon’s “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” the 2018 best comedy winner, is also in the mix. It will compete in the best comedy category against Netflix’s “Dead to Me,” NBC’s “The Good Place,” FX’s “What We Do in the Shadows,” Netflix’s “The Kominsky Method” and two HBO shows, “Insecure” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm.”
The envelopes are scheduled to be unsealed on Sept. 20 during a ceremony broadcast by ABC and hosted by Jimmy Kimmel.
Filmed remotely because of the coronavirus pandemic, the “Saturday Night Live” alum Leslie Jones hosted the announcements on Tuesday, and there were more nominations than ever this time around.
At a time when the number of television series has hit a high — there were more than 500 last year — the number of Emmy submissions rose by 15 percent, and the academy expanded the number of nominees. Television Academy members will cast their votes between Aug. 21 and Aug. 31.
Best actress in a drama stacked up to be one of the most competitive categories.
Of all the acting categories, best actress in a drama was the most star-studded.
Olivia Colman’s turn as Queen Elizabeth II in “The Crown” scored a nomination on Tuesday — and an Emmy win would make a nice to complement to the Golden Globe she has already won for the role, not to mention the Oscar she took home in 2019 for her portrayal of Queen Anne in “The Favourite.”
The four-time Emmy winner Laura Linney, a star of “Ozark,” also landed a nomination, as did Aniston, who plays an overwhelmed news anchor on “The Morning Show.” For the “Friends” star, it was her first nomination in 11 years. (She was last nominated for a guest appearance on “30 Rock.”)
Last year’s winner, Jodie Comer, a star of AMC’s “Killing Eve,” is also a contender for the prize, as is her cast mate Sandra Oh, who has yet to win an Emmy. Zendaya received her first Emmy nomination for HBO’s “Euphoria.”
Just how competitive is this category? Snubs included Reese Witherspoon for “The Morning Show,” Nicole Kidman for “Big Little Lies,” Viola Davis for “How To Get Away With Murder” and Elisabeth Moss for “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
‘Mrs. America’ duels ‘Watchmen.’
The limited series category has become the Emmy ceremony’s most glamorous and intriguing, given its major stars and blockbuster budgets invested by cable networks and streaming companies into single short seasons.
This year’s contest will be a showdown between two ambitious programs that tackled social issues: “Mrs. America,” the drama from FX and Hulu created by Dahvi Waller that chronicles the battle over the Equal Rights Amendment, and “Watchmen,” which was created by Damon Lindelof.
The other nominees in the category were Netflix’s “Unbelievable,” one of the streamer’s most popular original series in 2019, along with another Netflix series, “Unorthodox,” and Hulu’s “Little Fires Everywhere.”
The best actress in a limited series race looks like it will be a battle between Cate Blanchett, who plays the conservative firebrand Phyllis Schlafly in “Mrs. America,” and Regina King, the masked hero of “Watchmen.”
Kerry Washington was also nominated for “Little Fires Everywhere,” along with Octavia Spencer for Netflix’s “Self-Made” and Shira Haas for Netflix’s “Unorthodox.”
Will it be a remote ceremony, or what?
Here’s what we know for sure about the Emmys ceremony: ABC will put on the telecast, and its late night personality, Jimmy Kimmel, will return as the show’s host for a third time.
And that’s about it.
Will it be virtual? Will it be live? Will the winners deliver acceptance speeches via Zoom?
What even is an awards show ceremony in the middle of a pandemic?
The Television Academy has provided little information — but with ratings for live television events surging in recent months, a charmingly makeshift awards night could be just the thing to reignite interest in the Emmys.
The weirdness was apparent during the announcements on Tuesday, when Ms. Jones played the host from a studio and introduced her remote co-presenters Laverne Cox, Josh Gad and Tatiana Maslany. The chairman of the Television Academy, Frank Scherma, kicked off the ceremony from what appeared to be a basement room with cinder block walls.
Last year, the Emmys broadcast hit a low in the ratings, with an audience of 6.9 million.
James Corden, Seth Meyers and Jimmy Fallon were all snubbed in the talk show category.
What do James Corden, Seth Meyers and Jimmy Fallon all have in common?
Snubbed. Snubbed. Snubbed.
Corden, the CBS late-night host who follows Stephen Colbert, had been a mainstay in the talk show category in recent years. On Tuesday he was left out, partly because of a rule change that winnowed the category’s nominees from six to five. Fallon, the NBC host, was ignored by Emmy voters in the category for a fourth consecutive year.
John Oliver’s “Last Week Tonight,” which has won the category four years in a row, was nominated once again. Oliver will compete against Trevor Noah’s “The Daily Show,” Samantha Bee’s “Full Frontal,” Mr. Colbert’s “The Late Show” and “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” Emmy voters will take into account how they handled putting on shows from their homes during lockdown.