Experts’ Emmy predictions: Claire Danes (‘Homeland’) will win Best Drama Actress

Gold Derby polled 17 Emmy experts, and the majority of them have come to the conclusion that Claire Danes (“Homeland“) will win her second consecutive trophy as Best Drama Actress.

Danes is backed by 11 individual experts, giving her overall odds of 2/3, or just about 60% of the vote. Besides her “Homeland” win last year, Danes also prevailed in 2010 as Best Movie/Miniseries Actress for “Temple Grandin.” A win on Sunday night would be her third career Emmy, an impressive tally for an actor who is only 34-years-old.

The 11 Emmy gurus favoring Danes are Robert Bianco (USA Today), Debra Birnbaum (TV Guide Magazine), Scott Feinberg (Hollywood Reporter), A.J. Hammer (CNN HLN Showbiz Tonight), Daniel Manu (TelevisionWithoutPity), Melanie McFarland (IMDB), Tom O’Neil (Gold Derby), Steve Pond (TheWrap), Matt Roush (TV Guide Magazine), Piya Sinha-Roy (Reuters) and Anne Thompson (Thompson on Hollywood).

But watch out for Kerry Washington (“Scandal“), who is backed by all of the remaining experts, giving her odds of 19/10, or just over 30% of the vote. Washington’s supporters are Mike Cidoni (Associated Press), Lynn Elber (Associated Press), Lynette Rice (Entertainment Weekly), Paul Sheehan (Gold Derby), Ken Tucker (freelance) and Glenn Whipp (L.A. Times).

It should be noted that 16 out of our 17 experts have Danes in either first or second place in their rankings, essentially making her unstoppable in a preferential vote. The only guru to place her in third place is Cidoni.

Collectively, the experts don’t give much of a chance to the other five leading ladies: Connie Britton (“Nashville“), Michelle Dockery (“Downton Abbey“), Vera Farmiga (“Bates Motel“), Elisabeth Moss (“Mad Men“), and Robin Wright (“House of Cards“).

Our editors agree that Danes and Washington are frontrunners in this race, with three voting for Danes (Marcus Dixon, Matt Noble, and Tom O’Neil) and three backing Washington’s bid (Rob Licuria, David Schnelwar, and Paul Sheehan). However, two editors (Chris Beachum and Daniel Montgomery) changed their votes to underdog Farmiga after watching her Emmy episode entry in which her character was attacked and raped, thinking it has enough oomph to push her over the top.

Meanwhile, Gold Derby’s Top 24 Users are overwhelmingly predicting Danes, with 19 votes going her way. Three of the remaining users think Farmiga will win, while the other two think it’s Washington’s Emmy to lose.

Much like the experts, all editors and top users ranked her either first or second.

Find out who wins the Emmy for Best Drama Actress when Neil Patrick Harris hosts the 65th Primetime Emmys on Sunday night. Before then, watch our editors’ slugfest video on this race and vote below using our easy drag-and-drop menu.

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