After a pair of Emmy losses for Season 1 and 3 of “Ray Donovan,” veteran actor Jon Voight could finally be on track to win Best Drama Supporting Actor for playing the title character’s conniving, manipulative father Mickey Donovan. The Showtime drama received a tepid response from Emmy voters during its first two seasons, but after receiving five nominations last year it could be peaking at the right time for Voight to pull off a surprise victory.
In its debut season, Voight secured the only nomination for “Ray Donovan” after winning the Golden Globe earlier that year. He may have appeared to have the momentum at the Emmys as well, but ultimately lost to “Breaking Bad’s” Aaron Paul. For his second season, Voight was snubbed by the TV academy, but his co-star Liev Schreiber earned a nomination for Best Drama Actor playing the title character.
Last year “Ray Donovan” implemented its most successful Emmy campaign to date, earning five nominations including the series’ first victory for Hank Azaria as Best Drama Guest Actor. Voight was invited back as a Best Drama Supporting Actor nominee, but fell short to “Bloodline’s” Ben Mendelsohn. For the first time ever the series also had two bids in non-acting categories, for the sound mixing team and David Hollander for directing the episode “Exsuscito.”
Now that the Emmys appear to have warmed up to “Ray Donovan,” could Voight finally win if he can secure his third nomination as Best Drama Supporting Actor? It certainly isn’t abnormal for a supporting actor to prevail in this category following two or more losses. Let’s take a look at some of the men who’ve done just that:
1975: Will Greer as Zebulon Walton in “The Waltons,” third nomination
1984: Bruce Weitz as Detective Mick Belker in “Hill Street Blues,” fourth nomination
1987: John Hillerman as Jonathan Higgins in “Magnum, P.I.,” fourth nomination
1990: Jimmy Smits as Victor Sifuentes in “L.A. Law,” fourth nomination
1991: Timothy Busfield as Elliot Weston in “thirtysomething,” fourth nomination
1992: Richard Dysart as Leland McKenzie in “L.A. Law,” fourth nomination
1997: Hector Elizondo as Phillip Watters in “Chicago Hope,” third nomination
2002: John Spencer as Leo McGarry in “The West Wing,” third nomination
2004: Michael Imperioli as Christopher Moltisanti in “The Sopranos,” third nomination
2009: Michael Emerson as Ben Linus in “Lost,” third nomination
Although Voight is jockeying for his third nomination as Mickey Donovan, it would be his fifth career bid overall. In 2001 he was up for Best Movie/Mini Actor for “Uprising.” Four years later he was nominated in the same category for his work in “Pope John Paul II.” The decorated star was also named Best Actor at the Academy Awards in 1978 (“Coming Home”). Other accolades on his mantle include a BAFTA, four Golden Globes and numerous critics’ awards.
There is a strong case for Voight to be in the Emmy race again this year for “Ray Donovan.” According to Gold Derby’s Emmy odds, Voight faces competition from John Lithgow (“The Crown”), Jonathan Banks (“Better Call Saul”), Jeffrey Wright (“Westworld”), Ed Harris (“Westworld”), Michael Kelly (“House of Cards”) and Ron Cephas Jones (“This Is Us”).
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