Julia Louis-Dreyfus (“Veep”) broke or tied several Emmy Awards records Sunday night with her fifth straight win as Best Comedy Actress. Along with her other lead victory for “The New Adventures of Old Christine” in 2006, she now has six total trophies in the category. That’s now one more than the five trophies for Mary Tyler Moore (“The Dick Van Dyke Show,” “The Mary Tyler Moore Show”) and Candice Bergen (“Murphy Brown”).
Her fifth consecutive as Best Comedy Actress puts Louis-Dreyfus one ahead of Helen Hunt, who owned this category from 1996-1999 for “Mad About You.” For playing President Selina Meyer, she has also now joined the esteemed five-timers club of actors who won for playing the same character. The three others are Bergen, Don Knotts (“The Andy Griffith Show”), and Edward Asner (“The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and “Lou Grant”). And one more notch on her awards belt: Louis-Dreyfus is now in second place all-time for acting wins at seven (she also has a supporting win for “Seinfeld” in 1996). That ties her with Moore, Asner, and Allison Janney, all of whom are just one Primetime Emmy victory behind Cloris Leachman with eight.
Here is a link to our brand new behind-the-scenes photo gallery in the press room and throughout the theater plus red carpet.
According to the Expert TV journalists we polled, Louis-Dreyfus was a near lock to win before the ceremony. Seventeen out of 18 of them predicted her, giving her 2/13 odds: Michael Ausiello (TV Line), Robert Bianco (USA Today), Debra Birnbaum (Variety), Eric Deggans (NPR), Lynn Elber (Associated Press), Joyce Eng (TV Guide), Pete Hammond (Deadline Hollywood), Matthew Jacobs (Huffington Post), Tom O’Neil (Gold Derby), Lynette Rice (Entertainment Weekly), Robert Rorke (New York Post), Matt Roush (TV Guide Magazine), Paul Sheehan (Gold Derby), Anne Thompson (Indiewire), Ken Tucker (Yahoo), Adnan Virk (ESPN) and Jarett Wieselman (Buzzfeed).
Only one expert disagreed with the consensus: Kerr Lordygan (Rotten Tomatoes), who instead was picking Laurie Metcalf (“Getting On”), giving her 14/1 odds. This was Metcalf’s first and only nomination for her role as Dr. Jenna James — the series concluded this past season — but Metcalf is a 10-time nominee overall, including two other bids this year alone for guest roles in “The Big Bang Theory” and “Horace and Pete.” Metcalf previously won three times for her supporting role in “Roseanne” (1992-1994).
None of our experts predicted the other four nominees in this category: Amy Schumer (“Inside Amy Schumer”) placed third with 50/1 odds; Ellie Kemper (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”) and Tracee Ellis Ross (“Black-ish”) were first-time nominees with 50/1 odds; and Emmy legend Lily Tomlin (“Grace and Frankie”) with six prior victories had 66/1 odds.
Gold Derby’s Editors, who cover awards year-round, also strongly backed Louis-Dreyfus. All seven of us were unanimous that she would prevail: O’Neil, Sheehan, Daniel Montgomery, Marcus James Dixon, Rob Licuria, Matt Noble and myself.