Can Liev Schreiber win Best Drama Actor thanks to ‘Ray Donovan’ peaking at the Emmys?

After coming up short at the Emmy Awards for Season 2 and 3 of “Ray Donovan,” Liev Schreiber could finally be on track to win Best Drama Actor if he can secure his third consecutive nomination. The Showtime drama received relatively lukewarm reception from Emmy voters during its first two seasons, but after receiving five nominations last year it seems to be peaking at the right time for Schreiber to finally pull off a victory.

In its debut season “Ray Donovan” secured a single nomination for Jon Voight in the Best Supporting Actor category. Voight, who had won the Golden Globe that year, lost the Emmy to “Breaking Bad’s” Aaron Paul. Schreiber, who was snubbed by the TV academy, was recognized with a nomination at the Golden Globes for Best Best Actor, but lost out to another “Breaking Bad” star, Bryan Cranston.

For its second season it was Schreiber who led the way at the Emmys, earning his first nomination for the series’ title character. Schreiber’s was the only nomination for the show that year, and he was edged out by sentimental favorite Jon Hamm from “Mad Men.” But after two years of singular nominations, Emmy voters seemed to warm up to “Ray Donovan” after Season 3.

In 2016 “Ray Donovan” enjoyed its best run yet on the award circuit. Schreiber earned his third consecutive Golden Globe nomination and the series received five Emmy nominations, its most to date. More importantly the first Emmy win for the series went to Hank Azaria for Best Drama Guest Actor. Other acting nominations last year included Schreiber, who lost to Rami Malek for “Mr. Robot,” and Voight, who was defeated by “Bloodline’s” Ben Mendelsohn. For the first time ever the series also had two nominations in non-acting categories. David Hollander earned a nom for directing the episode “Exsuscito” but was edged out by Miguel Sapochnik’s work on “Game of Thrones.” The sound mixing team also earned their first nomination, but was similarly beaten by the “Game of Thrones” crew.

Now that the Emmys appear to have warmed up to “Ray Donovan,” could Schreiber finally win if he can secure his third consecutive nomination? Tom Selleck pulled off the feat when he won on his third attempt for playing Thomas Magnum on “Magnum, PI” in 1984. Just a year later in 1985, William Daniels won with his third straight nomination for playing Mark Craig in the drama “St. Elsewhere.” Even more impressive was 2006 champ Kiefer Sutherland, winning on his fifth go-around as Jack Bauer in “24.” But no actor was forced to hold out as long as the aforementioned Hamm of “Mad Men,” who won for the first time as Don Draper after eight consecutive nominations.

Will this be Schreiber’s year? Despite his back-to-back nominations in 2015 and 2016, earning his third for “Ray Donovan” will be no easy feat. According to Gold Derby’s Emmy odds, Schreiber faces strong competition from last year’s winner Malek (“Mr. Robot”) as well as Bob Odenkirk (“Better Call Saul”), Sterling K. Brown (“This Is Us”), Kevin Spacey (“House of Cards”), Matthew Rhys (“The Americans”) and Billy Bob Thornton (“Goliath”). Watch our exclusive interview with Paula Malcomson.

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