If there was a prize strictly for diversity among this year’s Emmy nominees, Martin Freeman might be the frontrunner. He has double nominations for playing a supposedly meek insurance agent on “Fargo” and a faithful doctor sidekick on “Sherlock: His Last Vow.”
In a recent audio podcast with Gold Derby (listen below), Freeman says, “I’m happy enough to just be in the shows, because that’s what any actor wants really is to be in good writing and working with good people. To be nominated for any of them is delightful.”
For the FX miniseries “Fargo,” Freeman plays small town Minnesota salesman Lester Nygaard. He accidentally meets up with hitman Lorne Malvo (Billy Bob Thornton) in the opening episode and goes down a dark path of murder and deception over the 10 installments. He is up for Best TV Movie/Miniseries Actor against Thornton, his “Sherlock” co-star Benedict Cumberbatch, fellow Brits Chiwetel Ejiofor (“Dancing on the Edge“) and Idris Elba (“Luther“), plus Mark Ruffalo (“The Normal Heart“).
Regarding his character of Lester, he says, “It’s the kind of role and the kind of show that you never stop having to work on in the most enjoyable way. All those reasons that made you want to be an actor in the first place by pushing yourself and challenging yourself and not being lazy. That was all there in abundance.”
Freeman’s other Emmy nomination this year is a repeat of one he earned in 2011 for his role as Dr. Watson. He contends as Best TV Movie/Miniseries Supporting Actor against “Fargo” co-star Colin Hanks and “The Normal Heart” actors Matt Bomer, Joe Mantello, Alfred Molina, and Jim Parsons.
Of this past cycle on “Sherlock” and the famed dective duo, he says, “If you know the show, and obviously the audience for it does know the show, they know exactly what that relationship has been and what it’s going to mean to John to know that Sherlock has faked his death and is coming back. Not only is Sherlock doing that, but not doing it with any humility, thinking he’s really clever about it. It’s very clear to anyone who knows these characters which buttons he’s going to press in John.”
Will Freeman win one, two, or neither Emmy on August 25? After listening to the podcast, vote with our easy drag-and-drop menu in the predictions center.