Anthony D’Alessandro is managing editor of AwardsLine


Drama Series
Boardwalk Empire
“I’m enormously pleased and proud of our nominations, especially this year. Perhaps at no other time in television history has the competition in the drama category been so fierce. The fact that we’ve been recognized is a testament to the talent of our incredible cast and crew”. — creator/executive producer Terence Winter

Downton Abbey
“It is a great honour and tremendously exciting to find our show on the list for this year’s Emmy ceremony. The very steep competition can only be considered a compliment, since they are all fantastic programs, and I hope they are as happy as I am, celebrating their nominations”. — creator/writer/executive producer Julian Fellowes

“The Emmys aren’t well known in Great Britain as the BAFTAs, but within the industry, they’re considered the preeminent TV awards. What (our nominations) mean for us is that Downton Abbey isn’t just a huge hit in its own country, but offshore as well. Downtown has the record number for most noms for a British series [Editor’s note: Downton has a total of 27 noms over 2 years. Upstairs Downstairs had a total of 23 since 1977)…(Downton resonates in America) because we start off with a familiar recognizable British drama with Edwardian and class system elements; things that are recognizable in literature. We created a modern show with fast storytelling, myriad characters; but going into a much loved traditional genre”. — executive producer Gareth Neame

“If you look at all the shows in the drama series category, all of them circle around controversial subject matter. It makes for the best drama…The bipolarity of Claire Danes’ character didn’t come to the front until later drafts. When she was first conceived, she was a reckless pariah inside the agency. We pathologised her behavior…which poised the question of whether she was reliable or not. They were two fundamental questions that ran through the season” — writer/executive producer Alex Gansa. “All the dramas exercise remarkable restraint, everything feels organic. Mad Men and Breaking Bad are brave and Alex and I are thrilled to be in their company…We were afraid when we first starting doing Homeland that there would be terrorist fatigue among the audience. What was interesting to me was that so much had happened, we were in Afghanistan and Iraq, a lot of our soldiers had been killed and traumatized”. — writer/executive producer Howard Gordon

Mad Men
“I am always amazed and surprised by our Emmy nominations. You don’t expect them and you never know what’s going to happen. This is particularly exciting because at five seasons, we’re the longest running show in the drama category…In terms of the content this season, I felt great about it. We have hundreds of people who work for us and we did our best…Today we take stock in what a ride it has been…I learned about the nominations from watching TV, I didn’t sleep that well. It’s very suspenseful.” In years past the TV Academy has overlooked Mad Men’s actors and actresses in terms of final wins. Weiner explained, ” There’s a little story for every category in terms of why it happens each year. It’s a mystery to me. I take some of it personally…There’s a degree of difficulty in terms of what these actors are doing; there’s a depth to their performances. I’m not in the actors’ peer (Emmy voting) group; in some ways they’re more subjective. Jon Hamm is a wonderful actor with a unique style. Jessica Pare is incredible. This was one of John Slattery’s best season and I don’t know why they (the TV Academy) overlooked him”.–creator, executive producer, writer, director Matthew Weiner

Miniseries Or Movie
American Horror Story
“I was really thrilled with American Horror Story‘s nominations today in the technical and acting categories — it was really a great morning. The horror genre historically and with rare exception has done well and I was thrilled that voters really got what we were doing…The heart of the show is about social horrors which we’re exploring and delving into through a horror lense. People got that. It wasn’t just a slasher project, we had aspirations to make something else. Everyone loved that we were shifting the spotlight and delving deeper, particularly with the Columbine-like plot. I was always inspired by such movies as The Exorcist and Silence Of The Lambs. They were horror films, but they had deeper metaphors.” [Commenting on his other series, Glee, receiving only one nomination]: “Of course, I try to see the glass as half full.” — co-creator Ryan Murphy

Hatfields & McCoys
“I am over the moon. I’m going completely nuts. I was overwhelmed and not really prepared (for this show) in the success with the ratings, and taken back that it was so well-received and to have all our peers recognized; all of my department heads. … When you distill the essence of this story, it’s about two families, about friends and lovers. It’s similar to the drama seen with the Montagues and Capulets, the IRA and the Protestants — it’s a tragic tale of mankind, but told personally: It’s a combination of a true story, our sense of betrayal and our ability to forgive and not forgive. These are the kernels we can relate to as human beings. That’s the story that engaged everyone. I had no idea that It would spark the ratings numbers it did. But when I look at the accomplishments of my cast and the department heads who took this on for so little money, under difficult circumstances, at a distant shooting location; all because they believed in the product and Kevin Costner, it was always about ‘How do we get the best out of the day’? ” — executive producer Leslie Greif

“It’s wonderful when Nielsen rewards you, but when your peers at the TV Academy do, it’s a nice end to a very sweet story. It’s rewarding for everyone in the whole cast, Kevin Costner, Bill Paxton, Leslie Greif and the whole cast; it’s overwhelming. We worked with Leslie for a couple of years on the conceit of the project. We see this as the iconic American family…I wouldn’t call it a western. It wasn’t about cowboys or frontier land. It was about the heartache and pain that these families put themselves through”. — executive producer/president and general manager HISTORY/Lifetime Networks Nancy Dubuc
“13 just got lucky. That’s an amazing number of nominations for Sherlock and we are beyond thrilled. This has been a passion project for everyone involved and its success has overwhelmed all of us. I think we’re even more overwhelmed this morning”. — co-creator/executive producer/writer Steven Moffat

Lead Actor In A Drama Series
Hugh Bonneville, Downton Abbey
“To be part of a show like Downton Abbey is thrilling enough, that it has been embraced by American audiences to the extent it has and for the show to have received 16 nominations from the Emmy voters this year is astonishing. I can hardly believe that I’ve been nominated alongside five legends of contemporary television drama — Steve, Bryan, Michael, Damian and Jon. I’m truly honoured”.

Steve BuscemiSteve Buscemi, Boardwalk Empire
“There are so many amazing performances this year by actors I really admire, that it means a lot to me to being included among them”.

Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
“I’m thrilled we received 13 nominations…(The appeal of this show with audiences) isn’t about the crime, or the fact that Walter White is a drug lord or his control of power, it’s about the disintegration of the human spirit, how in one fateful decision, a man can spiral and fling himself out of control. That’s what happened when Walter White decided to cook crystal meth so that he can provide for his family. He comprised his morality and became someone he isn’t. It’s a morality tale in that sense. People relate to the show in that sense….when you garner any success in this business, you have the potential of being typecast. Unless that’s your wheelhouse and that’s where you want to stay.  I didn’t want to be known for just comedy, but as an actor. When I left Malcolm In The Middle, there were offers to play the goofy dad, but Breaking Bad came along. I knew when I read it that Walter White was a rare beast. Whoever was going to play Walter White, it was going to change their life.”

Damian Lewis, Homeland
“I’m over the moon to receive my first Emmy nomination. I feel so lucky to be a part of “Homeland” and am extremely grateful to the writing team for continuing to write such extraordinary roles for all of us. I couldn’t feel more proud to be keeping company with such a fantastic range of talented actors.”

Comedy Series
Modern Family
“After being nominated we (at Modern Family) say ‘That’s a relief’ or ‘That’s really exciting in a new way.’ It’s hard to stay at a high level of quality. Shows tend to repeat themselves at the Emmys in terms of nominations and it’s more reason for voters not to vote for you. We take nominations as a validation and a tough thing to get…It’s not for us to declare that we are a classic. All in the Family was politically oriented…We tried to be as widely appealing as possible, but with some dynamic that rang true to the audience. We weren’t calculating a show that would be popular. Essentially the question was ‘What’s the American family today?’ 50 years ago it was Father Knows Best and The Brady Bunch, but they’re no longer the traditional American families. Ours has a gay couple with an adopted daughter. Once we cast it with all these actors, we found in the mix, we had a show with a different take on family”. –co-creator, executive producer, writer Christopher Lloyd

The Big Bang Theory
“I’m just really proud and happy for the TV Academy’s recognition of Jim Parsons and Mayim Bialik from TBBT, Jon Cryer and Kathy Bates from Two and a Half Men, and Melissa McCarthy from Mike & Molly (and SNL!).  Then you add in the nom for TBBT which honors everyone: cast, crew, writing staff, production staff, and the editing, lighting and art direction tech noms for all three shows — and I’m in danger of using overflowing cup cliches.” – executive producer, writer and co-creator Chuck Lorre

Lead Actor In A Comedy Series
Alec Baldwin, 30 Rock
“As the show enters its last season, I’m gratified to be nominated again by the Academy”.

Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
“My mantra during award season is to enjoy it, enjoy it, enjoy it.  You can’t help but feel stressed anytime attention is placed upon you.  Chuck Lorre once said to me ‘Enjoy this as much as possible, because it’s a wildly fickle business.’ That’s all you can do.  What’s funny during awards season is that there’s nothing you can do to work on it. You just smile and soak it in. Emotionally, you scrap book the moment and that’s more important instead of getting stressed over whether you said the right thing at the right party…I enjoy playing Sheldon Cooper from the first time I read the pilot. It’s all about the writers and what they created and how they handled the evolution of him. What attracted me to Sheldon was the way he talked, the way he dealt with other people; it all stems from this big brain he has…Couple that with some severe social oddities and there are infinite possibilities of unpredictable behavior.”

Don Cheadle, House of Lies
“Wow. My agent was right when he said, ‘You don’t have to bribe all the people to get nominated, Don. Just the right people.’ This is the best $246,000.00 I’ve ever spent. Thanks, Emmy.”

Louis C.K., Louie (Also Outstanding Directing and Writing for a Comedy Series)
“I feel like there’s no way to tell how these things (the Emmys) are being voted on, but I like being recognized as it helps the show…When I’m shooting Louie, I get excited when scenes come out the way I imagined them, i.e. the size of the frame. I create certain conditions and shoot in a specific way instead of setting scenes up and knocking them down. Some directors are succinct and shoot with storyboards. That’s an amazing discipline, but there are moments when you get to the set and you have to let go.”

Directing For A Comedy Series
Jake Kasdan, New Girl
“I have’t worked in TV for several years prior to New Girl. Liz (Meriwhether) called me up out of the blue (to work on the pilot). We knew each other a bit, but I read the script and flipped out for it…There’s a lot of Zooey Deschanel in the lead character of Jess and a lot of Liz. It’s also a fictional character that is personal to them…When people ask me how much of Zooey is Jess, I just say (jokingly), ‘Jess looks exactly like Zooey.'”

Lead Actor In A Miniseries Or Movie
Kevin Costner, Hatfields & McCoys
“Filming Hatfields & McCoys was one of the most fulfilling and inspiring projects that I’ve had the opportunity to work on, and it was truly gratifying that audiences tuned in to see our interpretation of this classic American story. To be recognized for our work by the members of Television Academy this morning is the cherry on top. I share this nomination with everyone who contributed to this project from the producers, cast and crew to the great team at History, who really stepped up to support the creative vision of the filmmakers”.

Benedict Cumberbatch, Sherlock
“I am absolutely thrilled and could not have wished for a better birthday present especially because I am so delighted to see how well we have done across the board, particularly Paul McGuigan getting a nod for his extraordinary vision.”

Lead Actress In A Drama Series
Claire Danes, Homeland
“I am honored to be recognized by the Academy among such a talented group of women. I am thrilled that Damian, Homeland, our amazing writers and director and so many others got nominated. It is a great day to be on set where we can all celebrate together.”

Michelle Dockery, Downton Abbey
“This is an incredible feeling, it is wonderful! To be nominated in this category and be in the company of these amazing women is a real honour and I am truly grateful to the Emmy voters for putting me in there”.

Elisabeth Moss, Mad Men
“I never thought I would go to the Emmys and be nominated four times. (The audience appeal) to Peggy is that she’s a real person. What I love about each of the characters on Mad Men, is that nobody is black and white, nobody is good or bad; they’re complicated. For each of the character, you forget that the show is set in the 1960s, the cloths, the furniture — you invest in them like real people. Peggy’s story is similar to all girls in their 20s. Young women will come up to me and exclaim ‘I had the same exact experience. That’s what happened when I asked for a raise!’ For me, Peggy is the everyman, she’s the audience’s eyes into this (ad agency world). She first walked into that office during the pilot and people identified with her.”

Juliana Margulies, The Good Wife
“I am so honored to be nominated for The Good Wife. The Academy has been very supportive of me over the years and my appreciation is boundless.”

Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or A Movie
Sarah Paulson, Game Change
“I can’t begin to express how exciting it is to be recognized alongside these extraordinary actresses. I love that I had the chance to play a character like Nicolle Wallace. She has this mix of political savvy and integrity that I found so interesting. I’m so thrilled Game Change was received so enthusiastically by the Academy.”

Lead Actress In A Comedy Series

Zooey Deschanel, New Girl
“I love this part, it’s one that I would love to play for a long time. When I read the pilot, I thought it was the funniest script and it spoke to me. I never considered doing a network pilot, but this was too good. I’ve had an incredible experience and I’m a total convert to TV… Series creator Liz Meriwhether is a true genius and I’m lucky to collaborate with her and create this character”.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
“I’m thrilled to be nominated and if I win I promise to lower taxes. And I’m not just saying that. That’s not an empty promise or an attempt to bribe the voters”.

Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie
“I love Nurse Jackie and I’m very honored to be recognized by my peers. This year is particularly exciting with several of my castmates also being nominated. It is great year for Nurse Jackie!”

Lead Actress In A Miniseries Or Movie
Nicole Kidman, Hemingway & Gellhorn
“I think (the Emmy nomination) is just such an acknowledgement of Martha Gellhorn and that’s where it fits because I wanted her to be discovered. I’m thrilled to be working in all different mediums, and to be honored in this one is just great. I love playing women who push boundaries and Martha was just so brazen and bold, but very smart and determined. In the years that she spent as Ernest Hemingway’s wife, he had an enormous hand in shaping her, giving her the push to go deeply in her ability to write. She also challenged him and was very much his muse. He wrote For Whom The Bell Tolls for her and dedicated it to her”.

Julianne Moore, Game Change
“I am so thrilled about this nomination. Game Change was one of the most enjoyable and fulfilling projects of my career, and I loved working with everyone on it. So I am especially happy for the nominations of my talented peers Jay, Danny, Woody, Ed and Sarah.”

Connie Britton, American Horror Story
“I can tell you that I was truly and thoroughly, utterly surprised…I try not to play the female victim in my characters and that’s definitely a prototype of the horror genre. Ryan Murphy always saw my character (Vivien Harmon) as someone who was really gaining her power and who was heroic. I saw her that way too, even though she was flawed and enduring a lot of conflict. But in dealing with her shortcomings, she was finding a new level of strength.”

Supporting Actor In A Drama Series
Jim Carter, Downton Abbey
I’d just like to say I’m delighted for Julian and everyone connected with the show. It’s brilliant that Downton Abbey has been nominated in so many categories as it is a real team effort and the nominations reflect that”.

Brendan Coyle, Downton Abbey
“I’m overwhelmed, it is a real privilege to be in this ensemble and I genuinely did not expect this. But I’m very honoured”.

Giancarlo Esposito, Breaking Bad
“I’ve been on television for many years, since I was a child. I’ve always felt that TV had the ability to change people’s lives. Hopefully I’ve been able to do that a little bit on this show. There were moments this season on Breaking Bad when I was put in a position of vulnerability and subservience and it really rocked my world. It demonstrated to me how to show up and be present and let the emotions of the character take over…At this point in time, I’m so proud of the show’s family and just so grateful to the viewers and to everyone. This could not be a greater moment for me. I’m completely honored”.

Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad
“I am so thrilled to be nominated and even more happy for all the nominations for breaking bad and my fellow cast members. I am so thankful to the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. This is a dream job, so to receive a nomination for my work on Breaking Bad is truly a gift.”

Jared Harris, Mad Men
”I’ve lived in American since 1990, so I’ve spent more time living in America than in England. Whenever British actors are nominated for big American awards, they tend to be blase about it. I don’t give a damn what they think, as I tend to get very excited about it.”

Guest Actor In A Drama Series
Ben Feldman, Mad Men
“To be included in the credits of a show I’ve loved since the moment it first aired is a tremendous honor. To be nominated for my role on the show is surreal. I am honored to play ‘Michael Ginsberg’ and this nomination is a testament to Matthew Weiner and Mad Men’s incredible writing staff and crew. I have heard people say in the past it is an honor just to be nominated and I feel like I won when I walked onto the set this year.”

Supporting Actor In A Comedy Series
Bill Hader, Saturday Night Live
“It’s a great honor, though there should be parentheses next to my name with all of the ‘SNL’ writers. And now I have to kiss up to the cast members of ‘Modern Family’ in hopes that they pull a Ving Rhames and give me their award when they win”.

Supporting Actress In A Drama Series
Joanne Froggatt, Downton Abbey
“This is the biggest and best shock of my life, I honestly didn’t expect it and I’m overwhelmed. Amazing”!

Christina Hendricks, Mad Men
“There were some strong episodes for Joan this season, some real game changers…(In terms of Joan comprising herself sexually), I don’t judge my character. That’s important. It’s something that Joan needed to do. She’s fiercely loyal to her family. There were limited ways for her to take care of herself since she just kicked her husband out. This was her only option. That’s the thing I love about Joan: She’s unapologetic for her decisions and holds her head up high”.

Archie Panjabi, The Good Wife
“Kalinda is a fascinating character. She intrigues the audience. Every time, I learn more about her and peel away her layers. It can be frustrating, but we manage to do it. To receive this recognition is very rewarding. Sometimes it’s easy to get comfortable playing a character; human beings are so complex, so I like the challenge of Kalinda. I never take her for granted. At 3 or 4 am, I wonder: What’s really on her mind? What is her backstory? Michelle and Robert King continue to dig deeper into Kalinda, and I’m always very inquisitive about her.”

Supporting Actress In A Comedy Series
Merritt Wever, Nurse Jackie
“I am extremely surprised by the news and so grateful that people have enjoyed this season. I am very lucky to be a part of this show.”

Supporting Actress In A Miniseries Or Movie
Jessica Lange, American Horror Story
“I want to thank the Academy for honoring American Horror Story for all the incredible nominations. It’s been wonderful to work on a show with such talented actors and the fabulous creative team of Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk and all the brilliant writers who make Constance such an interesting character to play”.

Guest Actress In A Comedy Series
Margaret Cho, 30 Rock
“I’m so excited to have been nominated for an Emmy, especially for 30 Rock, which is an incredible show and also for playing a deranged and deceased world dictator who has divided the small country of my origin in two. That’s the best part. I think that’s what I’d call iron curtain irony”.

Maya Rudolph, Saturday Night Live
“I had so much fun hosting — it was like coming home. Getting to go back and play with your friends… there’s nothing better. Hosting SNL was my childhood dream, while other kids were playing princess I was doing impressions of Roseanne Roseannadanna. This is an amazing honor and one I share with Lorne, and all the incredible cast and writers of SNL.”

Outstanding Variety Series
Late Night With Jimmy Fallon
“So happy to get nominated! Can’t wait to get back to the Late Night office and celebrate! But first I gotta leave this theatre and change out of this Batman costume”. — Jimmy Fallon

Outstanding Reality Program
Shark Tank
Shark Tank is the little show that could. It’s still on top on Fridays in repeats. It constantly wins its time slot”. — executive producer Mark Burnett

Outstanding Reality Competition Program
Project Runway
“We’ve been celebrating our 10th Anniversary Season–in fact, the premiere is tonight. So it’s double good news.  We are so honored and thrilled at being nominated for an Emmy!!  After 10 seasons, I’m so proud that we’ve been able to keep PROJECT RUNWAY fresh and exciting.  Can’t wait till the Emmys, fingers crossed”! — Heidi Klum

The Voice
“I continually heard before The Voice aired that nobody is going to watch another singing completion on American TV. The Voice is different and the Emmys acknowledged that it’s a new era for singing competitions. I’m part of the TV Academy and even produced their shows and the good thing about the Emmys is that it can’t be predicted by ratings or hype. It comes down to a large number of Academy voters…Everybody out there applies for jobs and has to ask other people for the commission to do things and to get recognized. Power lies with a few. There’s something about The Voice which tilts this notion on its head: With the push of a button, a powerless novice singer becomes powerful”. — executive producer Mark Burnett

Reality Series Host
Betty White, Betty White’s Off Their Rockers
“I’m blown out of my mind and I’m thrilled beyond words”.

Outstanding Special Class Programs
The 84th Annual Academy Awards, Don Mischer and Brian Grazer, producers
“We’re really happy for the folks that were on our team. The expectations are so high with the Oscars that our creative team –the writers, editors, production designers, cameramen –felt the pressure to work harder and longer,” said Mischer, “We were fortunate enough: It was the shortest Oscar show in 26 years.””We came in late (as producers). Our challenge was creating a narrative for the show to live within and to do so in a timely fashion. We ended up doing it in three hours and six minutes. We created a fabric that would celebrate the movies and hard work, and did so in a non-cynical way for the filmmakers, actors, directors and producers.”

Directing For Miniseries, Movie Or Dramatic Special
Philip Kaufman, Hemingway And Gelhorn
“When you work on a project for nine years, it’s a fantastic feeling to see it rewarded with nominations and to see your cast and crew singled out for their excellent work. It was a great experience because HBO was so supportive and backed us all the way. It’s my first time working in television and this warm welcome is terrific”.

Short Format Live-Action Entertainment Programs
Childrens Hospital
“I wasn’t aware that we were eligible and this comes as a total surprise. I was so surprised that I learned about the nomination from a total stranger on Twitter…Childrens Hospital emerged as a web series during the writers’ strike. I was bored and wanted to do something with my hands. People would ask me, ‘Would you do this for TV?’ and I would say ‘Of course not!’ Then Adult Swim came calling. They truly are the internet of TV.” — Creator, executive producer Rob Corddry