Eight days before Emmy voters get their final ballots on Aug. 14, Susan Sarandon begins a season-long arc on Showtime’s hit drama “Ray Donovan.” That should help boost the profile of the Oscar champ (“Dead Man Walking”) who is sure to reap an Emmy bid this year for her portrayal of Bette Davis in the FX limited series “Feud.” Both she and co-star Jessica Lange, who played Joan Crawford, are all but certain to contend for Best Movie/Limited Series Actress for this riveting look at the making of “What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?”
On the upcoming fifth season of”Ray Donovan,” Sarandon play Samantha Winslow, the tough-talking head of a media empire who gets entangled with the title character, a Hollywood fixed played by Liev Schreiber. Because she will be in every episode of “Ray Donovan,” the actress will have to contend in one of the drama series regular categories. Whether that ends up being lead or supporting will depend on the size of her role.
Sarandon has earned four Emmy nominations over the years, including two for guesting on the comedies “Friends” and “Malcolm in the Middle,” but has yet to win. She could finally prevail for her dramatic turn on “Feud” as Davis, who does battle with Crawford during the making of their one movie together. This black-and-white horrorfest was an unexpected hit for these two past Oscar champs in 1962.
While the idea to co-star was Crawford’s, it was Davis who reaped the lion’s share of attention. Indeed, she earned a Best Actress bid and was determined to be the first three-time champ. But Crawford, who was smarting over her snub by the academy, worked behind-the-scenes to stop Davis from winning, even enlisting the help of her pal, gossip columnist Hedda Hopper (Judy Davis). She arranged to accept the award on behalf of the eventual winner, Anne Bancroft (“The Miracle Worker”), who was appearing on Broadway.
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