‘Homeland’ Season 6: Will it return to Emmy glory with shift to awards-friendly January premiere date?

For the first time, Showtime has moved its centerpiece series “Homeland” out of its fall lineup and into the more Emmy-friendly climate of January to April. While the show has been an awards mainstay since it premiered in 2011, the accolades have dipped in recent years. Despite many nominations, it hasn’t won an Emmy since 2013 when both Claire Danes and writer Henry Bromell prevailed for the Season 2 episode “Q&A.” Now in its sixth season, will airing closer to the Emmy nomination period help “Homeland” return to the awards stage?

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Last year the critically acclaimed, but previously under-recognized “The Americans” shifted its own release date closer to the Emmy sweet spot when it moved from a January to a March premiere for its fourth season. That shift resulted in immediate results for FX, earning nominations in major categories for the first time: Best Drama Series, Drama Lead Actor for Matthew Rhys and Drama Lead Actress for Keri Russell. In fact, of the seven series nominated for Drama Series last year only “Homeland” and “Mr. Robot” premiered in the U.S. outside of the January to April season.

Furthermore, of those seven nominated shows, two of them will not be returning to the upcoming Emmy contest: “Downton Abbey” concluded last year and two-time reigning champ “Game of Thrones” will premiere its seventh season outside of the eligibility period. Not only will the absence of these two shows provide breathing room for “Homeland” in Drama Series, but it also opens a wealth of acting category fields that “Homeland” used to be more competitive in.

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Last year Danes was the show’s sole acting nominee compared to 2013 when five of its actors were nominated. The sixth season will likely yield a sixth consecutive nomination for Drama Lead Actress for Danes (she’s won twice), but could also give previous nominees Rupert Friend (Drama Guest Actor in 2013), Mandy Patinkin (Drama Supporting Actor in 2013 and 2014) and F. Murray Abraham (Drama Guest Actor in 2015) a chance at another nomination in their respective roles. The new season also features “House of Cards” alum Elizabeth Marvel who could compete for Drama Supporting Actress.

The Season 6 premiere of “Homeland” airs on Showtime this Sunday, January 15 and is expected to conclude its 12-episode run on April 9. Do you think “Homeland” will be back at the Emmy Awards? Vote in our poll below and then sound off in our TV forums.

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