Entertainment

Tatiana Maslany, Game of Thrones earns Emmy nominations

Canadian actress and Orphan Black star Tatiana Maslany is a first-time Emmy nominee for TV's most prominent awards, as Game of Thrones leads the overall race with 24 nominations.

Game of Thrones leads with 24 nominations

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      Canadian actress Tatiana Maslany has earned her first nomination for the Emmys, TV's most prominent awards, for her turn in the sci-fi hit Orphan Black.

      The Regina actress, who has already earned accolades for the role, faces stiff competition for the best dramatic actress Emmy from top Hollywood names, including Claire Danes (Homeland), Viola Davis (How to Get Away With Murder), Taraji P. Henson (Empire), Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men) and Robin Wright (House of Cards).

      Maslany shared her joy with another first-time nominee, comedy upstart Amy Schumer via Twitter.

      First-time Emmy nominees Tatiana Maslany and Amy Schumer shared their enthusiasm via Tweets. (Tatiana Maslany/Twitter)

      Bloody fan favourite Game of Thrones earned the most nominations overall, leading the pack with 24, including for best drama. It faces six contenders for the coveted honour: Better Call Saul, Downton Abbey, Homeland, House of Cards, Mad Men and Orange is the New Black.

      Meanwhile, in the running for the best comedy series Emmy are established shows Modern Family, Parks and Recreation, Veep and Louie, as well as newcomers Silicon Valley, Transparent and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

      Other key nominees include:

      Lead actor, drama:

      • Kyle Chandler, Bloodline.
      • Jeff Daniels, The Newsroom.
      • Jon Hamm, Mad Men.
      • Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul.
      • Kevin Spacey, House of Cards.
      • Liev Schreiber, Ray Donovan.

      Lead actor, comedy:

      • Anthony Anderson, Black-ish.
      • Louis C.K., Louie.
      • Don Cheadle, House of Lies.
      • Will Forte, The Last Man on Earth.
      • Matt LeBlanc, Episodes.
      • William H. Macy, Shameless.
      • Jeffrey Tambour, Transparent.

      Lead actress, comedy:

      • Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie.
      • Lisa Kudrow, The Comeback.
      • Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep.
      • Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation.
      • Amy Schumer, Inside Amy Schumer.
      • Lily Tomlin, Grace and Frankie.

      A full list of nominees in all the Emmy Award categories is available on the Academy website Emmys.com.

      Awards reflect changing TV landscape

      Reading between the lines, the nominations harken back to some of the past year's top stories in television, including the long-awaited conclusion of acclaimed '60s period drama Mad Men, the changing of the guard on late-night TV and the continued rise of streaming series.

      Accordingly, the Emmys represent a final chance for Mad Men's Jon Hamm to earn a trophy for his indelible turn as Don Draper and to recognize David Letterman for his decades as host of Late Night.

      With Emmy voters spreading the love between established favourites and TV newcomers, some notable snubs have resulted. For instance, TV's most popular comedy The Big Bang Theory and Emmy favourite Jim Parsons were missing from the list, as were The Good Wife, widely considered broadcast TV's best drama, and its star Julianna Margulies.

      Sitcom giant The Big Bang Theory was among the shows snubbed. (Michael Yarish/CBS/Associated Press)

      However, one welcome thread that emerged was recognition of the diverse acting talent currently on-air, including Anthony Anderson (Black-ish) and Don Cheadle (House of Lies) up for lead actor in a comedy and best dramatic actress nominations for Empire's Taraji P. Henson and How to Get Away With Murder's Viola Davis.

      The latter could make for TV history: if either Henson or Davis wins, it will mark the first time an African-American actress has ever triumphed in the category.

      Canadians in the mix

      Along with Maslany's nominations, other Canadians and projects with Canadian ties were recognized by Emmy voters.

      Edmonton-born actor Michael J. Fox earned a nomination for his recurring guest turn on The Good Wife, while teen series Degrassi is in the race for best children's series.

      Toronto director Jeremy Podeswa earned a nomination for helming a controversial episode of Game of Thrones, while Calgary-raised screenwriter Semi Chellas was recognized as part of the writing ensemble for Mad Men.

      Brothers Jeff and Mychael Danna earned a pair of nominations for their music composition and theme music for the series Tyrant, while lifestyle darling The Property Brothers is up for best structured reality series.

      The Honorable Woman, an international co-production broadcast on CBC-TV, will also compete in multiple Emmy categories, including best limited series and best actress in a limited series or movie for Maggie Gyllenhaal.

      Presenters earn nods

      Organizers announced the 2015 nominees from Hollywood Thursday morning, with two stars of fan-favourite shows — Orange is the New Black actress Uzo Aduba and So You Think You Can Dance host Cat Deeley — unveiling the contenders.

      The pair were also delighted to learn they were nominees themselves, with Aduba to vie for best supporting actress in a drama series and Deeley a finalist for host of a reality show or competition.

      Hosted by comic actor Andy Samberg, the 2015 Emmy Awards will be held at the recently renamed Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on Sept. 20 and broadcast live on Fox.

      With files from The Associated Press and The Canadian Press

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