‘General Hospital,’ ‘Young & Restless’ lead Daytime Emmys nominations

General Hospital,” which leads all shows at this year’s Daytime Emmy Awards with 21 nods, and second place “The Young and the Restless” (20) contend for Best Drama Series against reigning two-time champ “The Bold and the Beautiful” (14) and the recently-cancelled “All My Children” (13). “AMC” won the last of its 3 races in this category back in 1998, “B&B” had never prevailed before 2009, “GH” claimed the most recent of its record 10 prizes in 2008 and “Y&R” took the last of its seven awards in 2007 when it tied with “Guiding Light.”

The Daytime Emmy Awards are unique among the major kudos in that they have a preliminary round of voting in which performers must first be selected by their peers to represent their chosen series. This “pre-nominations” list contained a double digit number of entries in each of the six categories which were pared down to the finalists. [See: Photo Galleries of the acting nominees]

Among those contending for Best Actor are reigning champ Michael Park, who starred in “As the World Turns” which left the air last fall after 53 years. He reaped one of the show’s four farewell bids and faces off against Ricky Paull Goldin (“All My Children”), James Scott (“Days of Our Lives”), 2003 winner Maurice Benard (“General Hospital”) and three-time champ Christian LeBlanc (“The Young and the Restless”).

The Best Actress slate has six nominees: Alicia Minshew (“All My Children”), 1989 supporting winner Debbi Morgan (“All My Children”), Colleen Zenk (“As the World Turns”), five-time champ Susan Flannery (“The Bold and the Beautiful”), Laura Wright (“General Hospital”) and two-time winner Michelle Stafford (“The Young and the Restless”).

Of the 28 acting nominations in all, “General Hospital” claimed a leading seven bids with contenders in each race while “The Young and the Restless” had six. Among the other five series, “All My Children” reaped five noms while “As the World Turns” and “The Bold and the Beautiful” earned three each and both “Days of Our Lives” and the recently-axed “One Life to Live” had to settle for two apiece. “OLTL” contends in a dozen races across the board.

Last year’s top entertainment talker “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” faces off against “Live With Regis and Kelly,” “Rachel Ray” and “The View” while informative talker “The Doctors” defends its title against “The Dr. Oz Show” and “Doctor Phil.” Last year, Dr. Oz won the hosting award for his self-titled talker and returns to the race this year against Rachel Ray, Regis Philbin and Kelly Philibin, the four experts on “The Doctors” and the ladies of “The View.” Four-time champ DeGeneres bowed out of this race last year after losing to “The View” crew in 2009.

Two-time Daytime Emmy winner Wayne Brady, who picked up a bid for hosting the game show “Let’s Make A Deal,” will emcee the the 38th annual kudocast on CBS June 17.

For the full list of nominations, visit the official academy website.

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