The Best Actor race at the Daytime Emmy Awards is shaping up to be one of the most interesting of recent years, with every soap opera having to decide between multiple veteran performers who have submitted their name for consideration.
From these pre-nomination contenders, the cast will vote on only one or two actors to represent the show. Beyond the previously-discussed frontrunners, there are both possibilities and spoilers who could contend.
Screen time is the biggest factor when considering the worthiness of these men to submit in the lead race. On “All My Children,” Walt Willey (Jackson Montgomery) should submit in the supporting race. He is unlikely to prevail over actors like Ricky Paull Goldin or Darnell Williams who both had more airtime and a much wider range of material from which to choose.
For others like Tristan Rogers from “The Young & The Restless" the issue is less about airtime and more about who is their competition among their castmates. Rogers has only been on the show since December 2010 and he is competing against three "Y&R" veterans. Christian Le Blanc is one of the most beloved actors on the series and has earned eight career nominations, winning three times (2005, 2007 and 2009). And both Eric Braeden and Peter Bergman have reigned as the lead characters on the series for decades.
For some actors, even if they make it to the next stage, they have to overcome a bias against their series to land nominations. With “One Life To Live” the only soap still filming in New York, veterans Robert S. Woods and Jerry Ver Dorn are isolated. Their West coast counterparts don't know them and may vote for those whom they interact with more regularly. And they have to compete against the men from the recently-cancelled “As The World Turns” which also filmed in New York. Ver Dorn was a staple of the departed “Guiding Light” where he earned 7 nominations and two wins in the 1990s.
The men of “Days of Our Lives” star on the only soap left on NBC. With those on ABC and CBS engaing in bloc voting, performers on "DOOL" were snubbed from three decades from 1979. However, a lead actor has contended in the past three years. James Scott is the main man on the show with his character as the catalyst for many of the storylines.
While the Daytime Emmys are unpredictable, always surprising us with at least one out of left field nomination, there are a few men who should hold little hope for recognition this year. "The Bold & The Beautiful" veteran lead Don Diamont (Bill Spencer Jr.,) has neve been nominated. Indeed, the only half-hour soap remaining has managed just two bids in this race since debuting in 1987: John McCook (2001) and Jack Wagner (2005).
And since prevailing in 2003, Maurice Bernard from "General Hospital" has managed just two more nods (2004, 2006) and no wins. Voters may simply have tired of his character, mobster Sonny Corinthos who has become the central force on the series, to the exclusion of other worthy performers. He also could be experiencing the same sort of backlast as Susan Lucci did after her 1999 victory; she only contended twice more (2001, 2002). However, unlike Lucci who has seen a dramatic reduction in airtime and story quality, Bernard remains front and center.