HBO’s acclaimed graphic novel adaptation Watchmen leads this year’s Emmy nominations with 26 nods.
The show, based on Alan Moore’s source material, scored nominations for best limited series as well as for stars of the show including Regina King, Jeremy Irons, Jovan Adepo and Jean Smart. With Game of Thrones now over, after it spent the last two years dominating the awards, the show has helped HBO reach 118 overall nods.
Emmy favourite The Marvelous Mrs Maisel follows close behind with 20 nominations, including best comedy and best lead actress in a comedy series for Rachel Brosnahan. The actor, who won for her performance in 2018, faces stiff competition from Insecure’s Issa Rae, Blackish’s Tracee Ellis Ross, Schitt’s Creek’s Catherine O’Hara and Dead to Me’s Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini.
The other shows within the best comedy category are Curb Your Enthusiasm, Dead to Me, The Good Place, Insecure, The Kominksy Method, Schitt’s Creek and What We Do in the Shadows.
While HBO and Amazon shows lead the way, overall Netflix comes out on top with 160 nominations, up from 118 the year before. It marks the biggest ever total for any network or streaming company. The platform’s biggest success was Ozark, which scored 18, including for best drama and for stars Jason Bateman and Laura Linney. It was tied with HBO’s Succession, the second season of which received nominations for best drama, as well as for stars including Brian Cox and Jeremy Strong.
The two shows face off in the drama category against Better Call Saul, The Crown, The Handmaid’s Tale, Killing Eve, Stranger Things and The Mandalorian, which made a surprise showing today, scoring 15 nominations, a strong start for the first qualifying year of Disney+.
There was also a solid start for Apple TV+ with the platform’s starry drama The Morning Show bringing in eight nominations, including for Steve Carell and Jennifer Aniston. The Friends star will compete against Zendaya, who received a surprise nod for the first season of Euphoria, as well as Linney, Killing Eve’s Jodie Comer and Sandra Oh, and The Crown’s Olivia Colman.
One notable snub was Reese Witherspoon, whose performance in the show as well as the Hulu drama Little Fires Everywhere and Big Little Lies were all ignored. Instead, both Laura Dern and Meryl Streep picked up best supporting actress nods for the second season of the HBO hit.
Other movie stars who made an appearance included Cate Blanchett for her role in Mrs America, Octavia Spencer for Netflix miniseries Self Made, Mark Ruffalo for I Know This Is True, Mahershala Ali for his performance in Ramy and Hugh Jackman for his role in TV movie Bad Education.
In a statement Jackman said: “I’m humbled by the nominations for both me and the film and excited to be named with such a talented group of actors.” Ruffalo called his inclusion “bittersweet” as his director, Derek Cianfrance, wasn’t also recognised. Blanchett also shared the following: “In a year filled with groundbreaking television storytelling and performances, it is humbling to be recognised.”
There was a strong showing for British and Irish talent including Paul Mescal nominated for Normal People, Dev Patel for Modern Love, Andrew Scott for Black Mirror, Matthew McFadyen for Succession and Helena Bonham Carter for The Crown.
In a statement, Bonham Carter said: “I am thrilled to receive an Emmy nomination. Margaret was a gift of a part and was a dream job. This is icing on the most full fat delicious cake I’ve ever eaten. Also given these past few months I have become ever more grateful to my television. It has been my window to the world. And I’m so thankful to the parts that television is now offering to women.”
This year’s nominees were also the most diverse ever with a record 34.3% of actors being black, including Don Cheadle, Maya Rudolph and Billy Porter. This is up from 19.8% in 2019.
The biggest snubs includes a no-show for the critically acclaimed final season of Homeland, nothing for Pamela Adlon and Better Things, a shut-out for Elisabeth Moss for The Handmaid’s Tale and a lone cinematography nod for HBO’s well-received adaptation of Philip Roth’s The Plot Against America.
The ceremony, which will take place on 20 September, is set to be hosted by Jimmy Kimmel although it remains unclear as to how the ceremony will take place.
• This article was amended on 28 July 2020. An earlier version said that Paul Mescal and Andrew Scott were British when they are Irish actors.