Here’s why Caitriona Balfe (‘Outlander’) is a major Emmy contender

“I just made a change in my predictions for Best Drama Actress. I’m going with Caitriona Balfe to be nominated for ‘Outlander,’” reveals Gold Derby founder Tom O’Neil in our latest Emmy predictions video slugfest (watch below at the 1:11:25 mark).

O’Neil’s prediction is bold, considering he’s the only one of our Experts or Editors picking her to make the list, but he believes that Balfe fits in to a fascinating pattern of past voting.

“If you look back in this category historically, there are lots of nominations for actresses who have a strong cult following, portraying characters about female empowerment,” O’Neil says.

O’Neil cites Roma Downey (“Touched by an Angel”), Jane Seymour (“Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman”), Amber Tamblyn (“Joan of Arcadia”) and Patricia Arquette (“Medium”) as such examples of leading ladies who reaped Emmy nominations for their genre shows. Heck, Arquette even won.

In many of those cases, their TV series did not reap much Emmy recognition in other top categories, but their leading ladies broke in to the Best Actress race even though most pundits didn’t predict they’d do so.

“This woman fits all of that,” he adds. “And she is an international, huge star. There’s a quality of passionate support for the show that I think could be enough to get her that nomination.”

3 Emmy longshots to bet on for Best Drama Actress: Caitriona Balfe, Tatiana Maslany …


Joining Tom O’Neil in the marathon Emmy slugfest are Rob Licuria, Daniel Montgomery, Charles Bright and Ralph Galvan. (Click links to see their individual predictions.)

Do you agree or disagree with Gold Derby’s Editors? Make your own predictions here (or scroll down to use our easy drag-and-drop menu) to enter our Emmy contest for the chance to win our $1,000 prize.

MEDIA ALTERNATIVE: Watch the video slugfest or listen to the audio podcast version.

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