Emmy nominations predictions: ‘Modern Family,’ ‘Good Wife,’ ‘American Horror Story’ will clean up

According to the combined predictions of our ExpertsEditors, Top 24 Users (those two dozen folks who racked up the best scores among the thousands predicting last year’s Emmy nominations) and All Users, “Modern Family,” “The Good Wife” and “American Horror Story: Freak Show” will be top nominees in their fields.

Click here for our complete predictions by category.

Editors Emmy slugfest: Which bubble shows will get Best Comedy nods? (Video)

After winning Best Comedy Series for a record-tying five years in a row, “Modern Family” is poised to earn another six nominations across the seven comedy categories we’re predicting, including Best Comedy; repeat supporting bids for Ty Burrell, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Julie Bowen; and guest-acting bids for Nathan Lane and Tyne Daly. Of those categories, it’s currently forecast to win twice: for Best Comedy (which would set a new record with six wins) and Best Comedy Supporting Actor (Burrell).

Next up is “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” which is expected to earn five top nominations: Best Comedy Series, Best Comedy Actress (Ellie Kemper), Best Comedy Supporting Actor (Tituss Burgess) and guest-acting bids for Jon Hamm and Tina Fey, who are both expected to win their categories.

Also expected to do well are “The Big Bang Theory,” “Saturday Night Live,” “Transparent” and “Veep,” which will be represented with four nominations apiece.

The Good Wife” will command the drama field with six acting nominations: Best Drama Actress (Julianna Margulies), Best Drama Suporting Actress (Christine Baranski) and a whopping four nominees for Best Drama Guest Actor (Edward Asner, Dylan Baker, Michael J. Fox and David Hyde Pierce). But despite being so heavily represented in acting races, we’re not expecting “Good Wife” to compete for Best Drama Series.

Editors Emmy slugfest: Which shows will get last two Drama Series slots? (Video)

Game of Thrones” will pick up four top nominations: Best Drama Series, Best Drama Supporting Actor (Peter Dinklage, currently the favorite to win), Best Drama Supporting Actress (Lena Headey) and Best Drama Guest Actress (Diana Rigg). Of course, “Thrones” is likely to earn far more nominations than that; it usually sweeps the Creative Arts categories, which are not among the races we’re predicting for nominations.

Additionally, we’re anticipating three top nominations for “Mad Men,” including wins for Best Drama Series and Best Drama Actor (Jon Hamm). Also predicted in three categories are “Better Call Saul,” “Bloodline,” “Downton Abbey,” “Empire” and “House of Cards.”

“American Horror Story” has been among the most nominated programs at the Emmys every season, and this year may be no different. We’re betting on six nominations in the top races: Best Limited Series, Best Movie/Limited Actress (Jessica Lange), Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actor (Michael Chiklis and Finn Wittrock) and Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actress (Kathy Bates and current frontrunner Sarah Paulson).

But “Freak Show” will most likely take a back seat to HBO’s “Olive Kitteridge” when it comes to the winners. It’s favorite to sweep the longform categories, with wins for Best Limited Series, Best Movie/Limited Actress (Frances McDormand), Best Movie/Limited Actor (Richard Jenkins) and Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actor (Bill Murray).

Also predicted for four nominations are fellow limited series “The Honorable Woman” and “Wolf Hall,” while Best TV Movie frontrunner “Bessie” is likely to snag three.

When predicting last year’s Emmy nominations, the Top 24 Users did the best (78.55%) compared to the Editors (77.68%), All Users (74.78%) and the Experts (74.64%). 

Do you think you can outscore thousands of your fellow predictors? If you think you know who’s ahead in this year’s Emmy races, click here to make your predictions. Your picks will be pooled together to generate our official racetrack odds, and if you have one of this year’s best prediction scores, you could win one of three contest prizes: $500 for first place, $300 for second place, and $200 for third place. Prizes will be bestowed as gift certificates to be redeemed at Amazon (if you qualify according to our contest rules).

Remember that coming out on top doesn’t just mean having the most correct predictions. You also have to use your three big bets (one of 500 points and two of 200 points) strategically to score the most game points. If you bet on a long shot who pulls off an upset, you can really rack up the points. As we use those point totals to break ties when more than one user tops our leaderboard with the same number of correct predictions, don’t take them for granted.

Last year, our top User was Andrew Pierce, aka PierceUNC, who predicted 80% of the nominees. Do you have that kind of special insight into this year’s contest? If so, there’s still time to make your predictions before Thursday’s nominations announcement. Click here to visit our predictions center, where you can enter your picks, or use the easy drag-and-drop menu at the bottom of this post to get started.

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Who REALLY deserves to win? Debate in our lively forums

Below, check out our complete predictions by program, with predicted winners listed in gold.


“Modern Family”
Best Comedy Series
Best Comedy Supporting Actor, Ty Burrell

Best Comedy Supporting Actor, Jesse Tyler Ferguson
Best Comedy Supporting Actress, Julie Bowen
Best Comedy Guest Actor, Nathan Lane
Best Comedy Guest Actress, Tyne Daly

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Best Comedy Series
Best Comedy Actress, Ellie Kemper
Best Comedy Supporting Actor, Tituss Burgess
Best Comedy Guest Actor, Jon Hamm
Best Comedy Guest Actress, Tina Fey

The Big Bang Theory
Best Comedy Series
Best Comedy Actor, Jim Parsons
Best Comedy Supporting Actress, Mayim Bialik
Best Comedy Guest Actress, Christine Baranski

Saturday Night Live
Best Comedy Supporting Actress, Kate McKinnon
Best Comedy Guest Actor, Louis C.K.
Best Comedy Guest Actor, Bill Hader
Best Variety Sketch Series

Best Comedy Series
Best Comedy Actor, Jeffrey Tambor
Best Comedy Supporting Actress, Judith Light
Best Comedy Guest Actor, Bradley Whitford

Best Comedy Series
Best Comedy Actress, Julia Louis-Dreyfus
Best Comedy Supporting Actor, Tony Hale
Best Comedy Supporting Actress, Anna Chlumsky

“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”
Best Comedy Supporting Actor, Andre Braugher
Best Comedy Guest Actress, Kyra Sedgwick

“The Comedians”
Best Comedy Actor, Billy Crystal
Best Comedy Guest Actor, Mel Brooks

“Inside Amy Schumer”
Best Comedy Actress, Amy Schumer
Best Variety Sketch Series

Best Comedy Series
Best Comedy Actor, Louis C.K.

Best Comedy Supporting Actor, Fred Armisen
Best Variety Sketch Series

Best Comedy Actor, William H., Macy
Best Comedy Guest Actress, “Shameless”

“The Colbert Report”
Best Variety Talk Series

“Comedy Bang Bang”
Best Variety Sketch Series

“The Daily Show with Jon Stewart”
Best Variety Talk Series

Best Comedy Actor, Matt LeBlanc

“Grace and Frankie”
Best Comedy Actress, Lily Tomlin

“Jimmy Kimmel Live”
Best Variety Talk Series

“Key and Peele”
Best Variety Sketch Series

“Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”
Best Variety Talk Series

“The Late Show with David Letterman”
Best Variety Talk Series

“Mike and Molly”
Best Comedy Guest Actress, Kathy Bates

Best Comedy Supporting Actress, Allison Janney

“Nurse Jackie”
Best Comedy Actress, Edie Falco

“Parks and Recreation”
Best Comedy Actress, Amy Poehler

“Silicon Valley”
Best Comedy Series

“The Soup”
Best Variety Sketch Series

“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”
Best Variety Talk Series


“The Good Wife”
Best Drama Actress, Julianna Margulies
Best Drama Supporting Actress, Christine Baranski
Best Drama Guest Actor, Edward Asner
Best Drama Guest Actor, Dylan Baker
Best Drama Guest Actor, Michael J. Fox
Best Drama Guest Actor, David Hyde Pierce

Game of Thrones
Best Drama Series
Best Drama Supporting Actor, Peter Dinklage
Best Drama Supporting Actress, Lena Headey
Best Drama Guest Actress, Diana Rigg

Better Call Saul
Best Drama Series
Best Drama Actor, Bob Odenkirk
Best Drama Supporting Actor, Jonathan Banks

Best Drama Actor, Kyle Chandler
Best Drama Supporting Actor, Ben Mendelsohn
Best Drama Supporting Actress, Sissy Spacek

Downton Abbey
Best Drama Series
Best Drama Supporting Actor, Jim Carter
Best Drama Supporting Actress, Maggie Smith

Best Drama Series
Best Drama Actor, Terrence Howard
Best Drama Actress, Taraji P. Henson

House of Cards
Best Drama Series
Best Drama Actor, Kevin Spacey
Best Drama Actress, Robin Wright

Mad Men
Best Drama Series
Best Drama Actor, Jon Hamm

Best Drama Supporting Actress, Christina Hendricks

“The Americans”
Best Drama Guest Actress, Margo Martindale
Best Drama Guest Actress, Lois Smith

Best Drama Actress, Claire Danes
Best Drama Supporting Actor, Mandy Patinkin

“How to Get Away with Murder”
Best Drama Actress, Viola Davis
Best Drama Guest Actress, Cicely Tyson

“Masters of Sex”
Best Drama Guest Actor, Beau Bridges
Best Drama Guest Actress, Allison Janney

“Orange is the New Black”
Best Drama Series
Best Drama Supporting Actress, Uzo Aduba

“The Affair”
Best Drama Actress, Ruth Wilson

“Law & Order: Special Victims Unit”
Best Drama Guest Actor, Andre Braugher

“The Newsroom”
Best Drama Actor, Jeff Daniels

“Ray Donovan”
Best Drama Supporting Actor, Jon Voight

Best Drama Guest Actress, Kate Burton


“American Horror Story: Freak Show”
Best Limited Series
Best Movie/Limited Actress, Jessica Lange
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actor, Michael Chiklis
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actor, Finn Wittrock
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actress, Kathy Bates
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actress, Sarah Paulson

The Honorable Woman
Best Limited Series
Best Movie/Limited Actress, Maggie Gyllenhaal
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actor, Stephen Rea
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actress, Janet McTeer

Olive Kitteridge
Best Limited Series
Best Movie/Limited Actor, Richard Jenkins
Best Movie/Limited Actress, Frances McDormand
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actor, Bill Murray

Wolf Hall
Best Limited Series
Best Movie/Limited Actor, Mark Rylance
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actor, Damian Lewis
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actor, Jonathan Pryce

Best TV Movie
Best Movie/Limited Actress, Queen Latifah
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actress, Mo’Nique

“American Crime”
Best Limited Series
Best Movie/Limited Actress, Felicity Huffman

“Derek: The Final Chapter”
Best TV Movie
Best Movie/Limited Actor, Ricky Gervais

Best TV Movie
Best Movie/Limited Actor, David Oyelowo

“Agatha Christie’s Poirot: Curtain, Poirot’s Last Case”
Best TV Movie

Best Movie/Limited Actor, Adrien Brody

“Killing Jesus”
Best TV Movie

“The Missing”
Best Movie/Limited Actress, Frances O’Connor

“Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe”
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actress, Susan Sarandon

“Stockholm, Pennsylvania”
Best Movie/Limited Supporting Actress, Cynthia Nixon

“Texas Rising”
Best Movie/Limited Actor, Bill Paxton

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