HBO is poised to win Best TV Movie for "Bessie" and Best Limited Series for "Olive Kitteridge" according to the combined Emmy predictions of our Experts, Editors, Users and Top 24 Users (those two dozen folks who did the best predicting last year's winners). Those results aren't a surprise given HBO's track record in these two categories. The premium network has long dominated the longform Emmy contests.
Since 1993, HBO has won the award for Best TV Movie every year but two: in 2000, when ABC's "Tuesdays with Morrie" prevailed, and in 2003, when the prize went to TNT's "Door to Door." That remarkable run doesn't include the three years when movies and miniseries were combined into one category. In that consolidated race, HBO telefilms won two out of three times, for "Game Change" (2012) and "Behind the Candelabra" (2013); the first season of "Downton Abbey" won this combined category in 2011.
This year "Bessie" appears nearly unbeatable, leading our predictions with 2/11 odds. This biopic of blues singer Bessie Smith starring Queen Latifah picked up 12 nominations, more than its five Best TV Movie rivals combined. No other nominee in the category has more than two bids, and two of those are fellow HBO productions: "Nightingale," which also contends for David Oyelowo's lead performance, and "Hello Ladies: The Movie," which is also up for its writing.
While HBO's first victory for Best Miniseries didn't come until "From the Earth to the Moon" in 1998, since then the paycaster has won six more times: "The Corner" (2000), "Band of Brothers" (2002), "Angels in America" (2004), "Elizabeth I" (2006), "John Adams" (2008) and "The Pacific" (2010).
"Olive Kitteridge," the adaptation of Elizabeth Strout's 2009 Pulitzer-winning novel about the life of an abrasive woman (Frances McDormand), is the strong Emmy favorite with 1/3 odds. However, it faces strong competition from "American Horror Story: Freak Show," the most nominated miniseries of the year with 19 bids, as well as ABC's topical ensemble drama "American Crime" and a pair of acclaimed British programs, "The Honorable Woman" and "Wolf Hall."
Do you think HBO will reign over both categories as we are predicting or will other nominees pull off upsets?
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Last year, our Experts had an accuracy rate of 58.62% when it came to predicting the Emmy winners. That score tied them with both Gold Derby's Editors and the Top 24 Users (those two dozen folks who did the best at predicting last year's Emmys). Our Users scored 51.72% (Click on any of these groups to see what they got right and wrong last year.)
Which group will be victorious this year?
As some of our Users turn out to be our smartest prognosticators, it's important that you give us your predictions. Your picks influence our Users racetrack odds, which also factor into our official combined odds.
Photo: Frances McDormand in "Olive Kitteridge." Credit: Jojo Whilden/HBO
Photo: Queen Latifah in "Bessie." Credit: Frank Masi/HBO