Even though James Spader famously announced that he has no idea how the Emmys are chosen, he's got a trio of these trophies on his mantel (two for "Boston Legal" and one for "The Practice") that might suggest otherwise. Now that he's on NBC's buzzy new drama "The Blacklist," might that number increase to four?
The answer is a resounding yes, thanks in no part to his brilliant speech from the November 25 episode titled "Anslo Garrick." (Watch the entire speech below.) It comes near the tail-end of the episode, when his character Raymond Reddington and his injured CIA partner (Diego Klattenhoff) seek refuge in a bulletproof glass box from a terrorist that's come to kidnap him. It's a rare moment of sensitivity from a character who straddles the line every week between being a bad guy and good guy.
As we know, one of the most common ways for an actor to win an Emmy is to give a big, grandstanding speech in their episode submission to Emmy voters. That's how Spader won three times for playing lawyer Alan Shore. He would often close the episodes with a memorable speech that stayed with voters long after they were done viewing his submission.
Just a few months ago, "The Newsroom" star Jeff Daniels prevailed as Best Drama Actor by opening his episode with an intense dictation of why America isn't the greatest country in the world. Another speech, another win!
And then there's Jon Stewart, who won a record 10 Emmys as Best Variety Series for "The Daily Show" by speechifying in every single episode. (He was dethroned this year by yet another wordsmith, Stephen Colbert.)
If speeches are key to winning Emmys, then this new one from Spader might be a shoo-in for a win. He'd follow in the footsteps of recent Emmy-winning stars from action dramas Damian Lewis ("Homeland") and Kiefer Sutherland ("24").
But the tricky part for Spader is just getting nominated first. That's not an easy task seeing as how "The Blacklist" airs on NBC and the Emmys seem to have a current love affair with cable and streaming series.
As a writer and producer, David E. Kelley has amassed a total of 10 individual Emmys. But perhaps his biggest claim to fame is that he's responsible for winning 30 different actors and actresses their own Emmy awards, across many competetive categories. Thanks to repeat winners such as Kathy Baker ("Picket Fences"), James Spader and William Shatner ("The Practice," "Boston Legal"), the total number of acting wins is even more staggering at 38... and counting!
Click arrow on right side of photo above to see all of Kelley's acting champs, beginning with the most recent.