‘Breaking Bad’ to premiere during Emmy voting: Savvy move, AMC!

All other networks, take note: AMC’s scheduling of “Breaking Bad” proves they’re the savviest Emmy player in the business.

For the first time since 2008, AMC failed to earn a trophy for Best Drama Series last year thanks to Showtime’s buzzy new drama “Homeland.” Even with two horses in the race — four-time returning champ “Mad Men” and long-overdue “Breaking Bad” — AMC still couldn’t go five-for-five in this category, and they don’t plan on losing again without a fight.

Last week, AMC announced the final eight episodes of “Breaking Bad” would premiere starting August 11. Usually the popular drama debuts at the beginning of summer, so why the change this year? Because one day later (August 12) marks the first day Emmy voters receive at-home judging DVDs. Final ballots are due at the end of the month (August 30).

In other words, AMC is ensuring that “Breaking Bad” will be premiering its much-anticipated final season during the same window of time Emmy judges will be voting on last season’s entries. Keeping the series alive in voters’ minds during this influential period is a briliant strategy move, but will it pay off?

According to early polling by Gold Derby, “Breaking Bad’s” eight episode mini-season from 2012 is a sure bet to receive a nomination for Best Drama Series. It currently comes in second place in our poll behind last year’s winner “Homeland.”

Three-time champ Bryan Cranston is predicted to win Best Drama Actor yet again, tying the all-time winner in this category Dennis Franz (“NYPD Blue”) with four Emmys.

Aaron Paul is predicted to win his third trophy in the Drama Supporting Actor category, but don’t count out Jonathan Banks just yet, who comes in fifth place.

As for the Drama Supporting Actress race, Anna Gunn is in our number two slot behind Maggie Smith (“Downton Abbey“), who just can’t seem to lose for her over-the-top role on the PBS Masterpiece series. 

Emmy nominations will be revealed July 18, with the 65th Primetime Emmys airing on CBS Sept. 22.

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