With a smashing of the genre barrier tonight, the HBO blockbuster based on George R.R. Martin’s novels has taken the TV crown. Game Of Thrones won the Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series, one of four it picked up tonight to go with the eight from last week’s Creative Arts Emmys. The dozen wins is the most ever for a program in a single year. This is the fourth consecutive year GOT has been nominated in the category and comes as the show tops the 67th Primetime Emmys as the most nominated show of the year with its fifth season in play for 24 awards.
In his thank-you speech from a very packed stage, EP David Benioff praised HBO “for believing in dragons.”
The win that put GoT over the top for most ever by a show in a year was David Nutter’s Best Directing victory, but Peter Dinklage’s second win for Best Supporting Actor truly left previous record holder The West Wing in the dust. It’s worth noting that this is the first year that all TV Academy members can vote for the Best Drama and Best Comedy series.
Backstage, GoT creators Benioff and D.B. Weiss were asked what they thought pushed them to their first series win in 2015. “They said you could win with dragons this year,” Weiss joked. The producer added that in the beginning they knew there would be resistance to a fantasy series getting the same Emmy consideration as a serious drama as, say, crime series or a Western. “We knew it would take awhile. We were fortunate enough to be blessed this time. (We knew) if we got lucky, we’d get there eventually.”
Dinklage was asked to speak to kids who are different (the request came from a reporter representing Japan). “It’s not just in Japan — bullying is a worldwide epidemic,” Dinklage said. “I had really great parents and some really great teachers. It’s all you need, really, and the rest is up to you.”
In what was a very competitive year, the final season of four-time Drama Series winner Mad Men and the debut season of Breaking Bad prequel Better Call Saul also were nominated in the category. Shifting from Comedy to Drama this year, Season 2 of Netflix’s Orange Is The New Black also was a contender as was fellow streaming service series House Of Cards‘ third season. The 2012 Best Drama winner Homeland was in play this year too along with past nominee Downton Abbey, which began airing its sixth and final season today in the UK.
Diane Haithman contributed to this report.