Golden Globe darling Hugh Laurie (‘The Night Manager’) could be poised for an upset

The Golden Globes give out one trophy one year for Best TV Supporting Actor. This single category with five nominees covers all limited series, TV movies, comedy series and drama series. With one category for all of television this is always one of the hardest race to predict in any awards season, which is why being a favorite of the Hollywood Foreign Press like Hugh Laurie is could make the difference in winning.

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In “The Night Manager” Laurie plays the suave Richard Roper, an illegal arms dealer who starts to rely on a newcomer to his inner circle, Jonathan (Tom Hiddleston), who is actually working for British intelligence. Roper is wary of outsiders because the authorities are trying to find a way to bring him to justice, and Laurie plays the winking devil with great skill, especially in the season finale as he holds court with Olivia Colman as intelligence operative Angela Burr.

Laurie was nominated for an Emmy for this performance, but lost to Sterling K. Brown (“The People v. O.J. Simpson), who is also his rival here now at the Globes, so why does Laurie still stand a chance? In 2006, Laurie won Best TV Drama Actor for “House” and gave one of the most amusing acceptance speeches, pulling names from his pocket at random and then thanking those individuals. They loved him so much that they awarded him again in 2007, which doesn’t seem like a big deal until you consider there was a 23-year gap between Laurie and the last person to win back-to-back: John Forsythe for “Dynasty” in 1983-1984.

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According to Gold Derby’s exclusive odds, John Lithgow (“The Crown”) is currently predicted to win as of this writing with odds of 8/15. Like Laurie, Lithgow is also a past two-time winner: Best TV Comedy Actor (“3rd Rock from the Sun,” 1997) and Best TV Supporting Actor (“Dexter,” 2010).

Currently in second place in the aforementioned Brown with odds of 13/5. Laurie is in striking distance of an upset as he sits in third place with odds of 28/1. Brown’s “People v. O.J.” co-star John Travolta is in fourth place with odds of 40/1 and Christian Slater (“Mr. Robot”) is in last place with odds of 80/1.

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“The Night Manager” received four total nominations: Best TV Movie/Limited Series, Best Movie/Limited Actor (Hiddleston), Best TV Supporting Actress (Colman) and Best TV Supporting Actor (Laurie). Among all TV programs it’s ranked second in total nominations behind their main competitor “People v. O.J.” (five bids). The Golden Globes love to spread the wealth around, so Laurie might be where they show some love to “The Night Manager.”

It wouldn’t be the first time an actor won this category after losing their corresponding Emmy race in the previous fall: Don Cheadle for “The Rat Pack” (1999), Peter Fonda for “The Passion of Ayn Rand” (2000), Chris Colfer for “Glee” (2011), Ed Harris for “Game Change” (2013), and Matt Bomer for “The Normal Heart” (2015) were all preferred by the Hollywood Foreign Press winning Best TV Supporting Actor. Laurie could easily be the next name on this list who finds the Globes kinder than the Emmys.

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