Who will win the Emmy for Best Drama Actor? Gold Derby editors Marcus James Dixon, Rob Licuria and Ralph Galvan consider Jon Hamm (“Mad Men”) to be the favorite to finally win Emmy #1, however Riley Chow is going out on a limb for reigning Golden Globe and SAG winner Kevin Spacey (“House of Cards”) and Charles Bright is voting for underdog Bob Odenkirk (“Better Call Saul”). Watch our new video slugfest at the bottom of this post.
Bryan Cranston won the Emmy for Best Drama Actor four times while on “Breaking Bad,” including for last year’s race. He is no longer eligible, but three of last year’s competitors return: Jeff Daniels (“The Newsroom”), Spacey and Hamm. They are joined by previous winner Kyle Chandler (“Bloodline”), Odenkirk and Liev Schreiber (“Ray Donovan”).
Hamm has now earned eight lead nominations for his role as advertising executive Don Draper on the AMC period drama, though he has yet to prevail. For the seventh and final season, he is submitting the 14th and last episode (“Person to Person”) in which Don is still absent from his job in New York, experiencing a meditation retreat in California on the spur-of-the-moment. He tells Peggy on the phone that he hasn’t been the man they think he is and doesn’t ever want to return.
Gold Derby odds to win: 1/4
This is the first dramatic Emmy nomination for Odenkirk, a past two-time winner in variety writing categories with nine career bids. He plays sleazy attorney Jimmy McGill in the AMC prequel series to “Breaking Bad.” In his episode, which was the ninth of the debut season (“Pimento”), Chuck wants Jimmy to accept a harsh truth in the midst of their class action suit.
Gold Derby odds to win: 8/1
Spacey plays President Frank Underwood on Netflix’s “House of Cards.” He has two Emmy nominations this year, bringing his career total to eight with no previous wins. Spacey submitted “Chapter 32” from the third season, the episode where Frank and Claire travel to Moscow to negotiate the return of an imprisoned U.S. citizen. Claire takes a stand against her husband that jeopardizes their plans.
Gold Derby odds to win: 20/1
For the freshman program, Chandler plays John Rayburn, a detective and local deputy in the Florida Keys amidst turmoil in his own family. On this episode (“Part 12”), his brother Danny’s past and present troubles become a threat to the family. This is his fourth career Emmy nomination which includes a victory in this same category for the final season of “Friday Night Lights” in 2011.
Gold Derby odds to win: 50/1
Daniels won this same category two years ago for his role as news anchor Will McAvoy on the HBO drama. He picked up Emmy nominations for all three seasons. On the sixth and concluding episode (“What Kind of Day Has It Been”), the shocking death of Charlie prompts Will and Mac to reminisce through flashbacks about the newsroom’s past and ponder ACN’s uncertain future. A wake is held for Charlie with a musical finish featuring Will, Jim and Charlie’s grandsons.
Gold Derby odds to win: 50/1
This is the second career Emmy nod for Schreiber after a previous nomination in 2000 as Best TV Movie/Miniseries Actor for “RKO 281.” For this Showtime series, he plays the title character, a professional fixer for the rich and famous. In his episode, the seventh of this second season (“Walk This Way”), when Conor demands a party with Terry, Bunchy and Mickey in attendance, tensions run high as the whole family gathers at the Donovan house and Ray comes face-to-face with ex-con Cookie Brown.
Gold Derby odds to win: 100/1
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Last year our Experts had an accuracy rate of 58.62% when it came to predicting the Emmy winners. That score tied them with both Gold Derby’s Editors and the Top 24 Users (those two dozen folks who did the best at predicting last year’s Emmys). Our Users scored 51.72% (Click on any of these groups to see what they got right and wrong last year.)
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