Sun. Sep 20th, 2020
Caleel Harris as Young Antron McCray and Michael K. Williams as Bobby McCray in When They See Us (Photo: Atsushi Nishijima/Netflix via AP)

If there’s one category with too many competitors this Emmy season its Best Limited Series/TV Movie Supporting Actor. It’s going to be one of the toughest races just to receive a nomination. And unless there’s a tie only six men will make the lineup.

Ben Whishaw who plays the thorn in Hugh Grant’s side in A Very English Scandal is the only one who seems assured of a nomination. He’s got the hardware to be feeling good picking up a Golden Globe, BAFTA and Critic’s Choice Award.

This leaves only five slots remaining and this category is SO competitive that individual who’d normally be nominated are going to be snubbed. Let’s take a look at who will try and join Whishaw.

Look who’s back!

  • George Clooney, Catch-22
  • Kyle Chandler, Catch-22

Clooney has yet to win a competitive Emmy and will also contend in both directing and producing. Chandler, a past Emmy winner looks for his first nomination on the Limited Series side. But with an overcrowded field these two could find themselves left out.

The Prisoner and the Cuckold

  • Paul Dano
  • Eric Lange

Both Dano and Lange are great in Escape at Dannemora and each is given the material necessary to receive a nomination. Lange, is outstanding as Patricia Arquette’s clueless husband. And Dano, is equally impressive as a prisoner sleeping with his supervisor. While Dano, is on the young side it is surprising he has yet to receive any major awards attention.

The Detectives

  • Stephen Dorff, True Detective
  • Chris Messina, Sharp Objects
  • David Oyelowo, Les Misérables

Any other year the above trio of talented actors would not only be nominees but possible winners. Dorff, more than holds his own against series star Mahershala Ali—and also gets to play his character in three different time periods. Oyelowo finds a way to make Javert his own after Russel Crowe’s performance in the film. And, for character actor Messina, timing is definitely his enemy if Sharp Objects had been eligible at last year’s Emmys he most definitely would have been nominated.

Father of an Emmy Winner

Stellan Skarsgård, Chernobyl

Stellan had to watch his son Alexander become the first Skarsgård to win a major U.S. Award for acting. Stellan Skarsgård has over 100 credits to his name but has never received any awards attention in the U.S. Could his luck be about to change? Or will he still go again unnoticed?

Why Didn’t He Sing and Dance?

Norbert Leo Butz, Fosse/Verdon

It seems a wasted opportunity that two-time Tony winner Butz was not given a song and dance number in Fosse/Verdon. Yes, he appeared in Fosse’s suicide fantasy number—but he didn’t sing. Butz, seemed a few weeks ago as if he would receive his first Emmy nomination now he’s on the bubble.

Could They Run the Category?

  • Jovan Adepo
  • Christopher Jackson
  • Joshua Jackson
  • John Leguizamo
  • Blair Underwood
  • Michael Kenneth Williams

When They See Us, Ava DuVernay’s limited series based on the wrongful conviction of the Central Park Five may have just debuted but has become a major player overnight. And depending on how in love the television academy is with this Netflix series it could take up multiple spots in Best Limited Series/TV Movie Supporting Actor category. The most likely are Williams and Leguizamo both are past nominees in this category. Look for Williams to finally contend for the win after two past nominations. And Leguizamo, received a nomination just last year when most had written him off.  But be on the lookout for Joshua Jackson who’s grown up on television and has yet to receive an Emmy nomination. Jackson stands out from the pack in episode two as one of defense attorneys who confronts the prosecutor played by Vera Farmiga about the hypocrisy of the trial.

DOA or Deadwood

  • John Hawkes
  • Gerald McRaney

TV-veteran McRaney finally won his first Emmy just two years (for This Is Us) and returns to the town of Deadwood. McRaney, was a late addition to the cast and primarily appeared in season three. Hawkes, after Deadwood would go on to star in Winter’s Bone earning an Oscar nomination along the way. The cast of Deadwood, is arguably the most successful post-show of all of HBO’s series and the television academy might want to celebrate these actors return to the wild west.

My Preliminary Predictions

  • Norbert Leo Butz, Fosse/Verdon
  • Paul Dano, Escape at Dannemora
  • Joshua Jackson, When They See Us
  • John Leguizamo, When They See Us
  • Ben Whishaw, A Very English Scandal
  • Michael Kenneth Williams, When They See Us
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