Sunday, May 25, 2014

Dream Emmy Ballot 2014: Outstanding Mini-Series and TV Movie Categories

As the Emmy eligibility period comes to an end in 6 days, and one of the last major contenders for Outstanding Television Movie, airs tonight, (The Normal Heart)  it's time to take a look at Mini-Series, and Television Movie categories. Listed below is my dream ballot.

My dream ballot, will look different, because I think the Emmy Awards, are skirting dangerous territory with submissions.  Here are the differences:

True Detective is not exactly a mini-series, neither is Luther, Sherlock, or American Horror Story, they, but in a sense they are what I would define as a limited series.  The Emmy Awards changed a lot in these categories this year, splitting the Mini-Series, and TV Movie into two separate categories (again), and adding a sixth nominee to the acting races. I think they should have also renamed the category as well, to Outstanding Mini/Limited Series.  True Detective should not be in the drama categories.  

Last year cancelled shows like Awake starring Jason Isaacs started to compete here, this year its the CBS series Hostages, while I will not bemoan placing a cancelled show here, I think there is a fine line, and CBS did not intend Hostages to be a mini-series, although it may help them get a nomination in Lead Actress for past Emmy winner Toni Collette. While these aren't Earth shattering things, I think they should be considered.

Beyond these changes these categories are stronger than ever. I know, I know, this is an unrealistic dream ballot, because I changed the category placement of True Detective, I may do the same for Orange is the New Black, which could be placed  in drama.  If you take away True Detective, this is still and excellent slate of contenders.  The Normal Heart is beautiful, and so well done.  Fargo does the Coen Brothers name proud.  Sherlock is edge of your seat good fun.  Coven while not as dark and twisted was a great piece on powerful women.  Speaking of powerful women, if you look at most of the Mini-Series, and Television Movies, do you notice anything lacking?  Lead female characters.

Outside of American Horror Story: Coven, few Mini-Series, or TV Movies were centered around women.  3 of the Outstanding Television Movie nominees have female leads, although 2 of those three are co-leads with men, and Coven is the only Mini-Series nominee with women at the core of the story.  This is a startling and consistent trend in this category, few mini-series center on women, and I think it's time for television executives to take notice and do something about this.   After all films like Wit, Life with Judy Garland: Me and My Shadow, and Temple Grandin were all excellent.

Outstanding Mini-Series
American Horror Story: Coven (F/X)
Fargo (F/X)
Sherlock Volume 3 (PBS/BBC)
True Detective (HBO)
The White Queen (Starz)

Outstanding Television Movie
Burton and Taylor (BBC America)
Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight (HBO)
The Normal Heart (HBO)
Return to Zero (Lifetime)
Trip to Bountiful (Lifetime)

Outstanding Actor in a Mini-Series, TV Movie
Benedict Cumberbatch-Sherlock Volume 3 (PBS)
Martin Freeman-Fargo (F/X)
Woody Harrelson-True Detective (HBO)
Matthew McConaughey-True Detective (HBO)
Mark Ruffal0-The Normal Heart (HBO)
Billy Bob Thronton-Fargo (F/X)

Outstanding Actress in a Mini-Series TV Movie
Helena Bonham Carter-Burton and Taylor (BBC America) 
Minnie Driver-Return to Zero (Lifetime)
Rebecca Ferguson-The White Queen  (Starz)
Jessice Lange- American Horror Story: Coven (F/X)
Sarah Paulson-American Horror Story: Coven (F/X)
Cicely Tyson-Trio to Bountiful  (Lifetime)

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Mini-Series, TV Movie
Matt Bomer-The Normal Heart (HBO)
Martin Freeman-Sherlock Volume 3  (PBS)
Taylor Kitsch-The Normal Heart (HBO)
Joe Mantello-The Normal Heart (HBO)
Alred Molina-Return to Zero (Lifetime)
Jim Parsons-The Normal Heart (HBO)

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Mini-Series, TV Movie
Amanda Abbington-Sherlock Volume 3 (PBS)
Frances Conroy- American Horror Story: Coven (F/X)
Janet McTeer-The White Queen (Starz)
Julia Roberts-The Normal Heart (HBO)
Gaboruey Sidibe- American Horror Story: Coven (F/X)
Allison Tollman-Fargo (F/X) 

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