We all know that recurring contenders get away with submitting in guest due to their contracts, like Joan Cusack and Robert Morse. But is there a limit of episodes needed to star in throughout the season in order to make Emmy ballot as supporting actor/actress? Holland Taylor has 1-2 episodes in “Two and a Half Men” per season nowadays. Can she submit as supporting because she is credited as such? What about Morena Baccarin this year? How it works?
My question is how can someone like Mayim Bialik be called supporting in Big Bang Theory, if, say, in her submitted episode, she gets quite a bit of screen time, as say, Sheldon, who’s submitted as a lead actor…? How can we justify these placements?
I always found it weird that actors in supporting roles on T.V. series can have as much if not more screentime than the lead actors and yet are still call “supporting” because they are not the primary characters.
Only those contracted as guest stars can submit as a guest, although they also have the option of submitting in supporting. Ninety-nine percent of the time, if someone is contracted as a guest, it will say so on screen. Exceptions include Robert Morse in most seasons of Mad Men and Henry Ian Cusick in the final season of Lost. In the latter case, we knew from the press releases, cast publicity photos and interviews. For whatever reason, whoever was in charge of the on screen credits chose just to ignore his contract; I am not sure how that was legal, but whatever. Morse likely has something similar.
Someone like Morena Baccarin can only submit in supporting. She was contracted for the full season; they just decided not to use her as much. Holland Taylor is not a series regular anymore, as you can see from the cast list in Two and a Half Men press releases and they are probably just preserving her on-screen credit like Cusick.
As for the other thing, you have to remember that Mayim Bialik, in the media and on the Emmy website, is nominated for “The Big Bang Theory“. Episode submissions are only for judging purposes to ensure that people do not win through name checking. In the context of the whole show or season, she is certainly supporting.
One more thing: until a few years ago, if a guest star appeared in six episodes, they had to submit in supporting. This is no longer in place.
So if Taylor, who is a 4-time nominee for this role, would like to submit what would be her place if they are, as you called it, preserving her credit?