Emmy experts say, don’t underestimate His Holiness Jude Law in ‘The Young Pope’

Under most circumstances Jude Law would be a shoo-in for an Emmy nomination — maybe even a win — for his role as an unorthodox pontiff in HBO’s “The Young Pope,” but as it stands he’s on the bubble for Best Movie/Mini Actor. This is one of the most crowded years for movies and limited series in the history of the Emmys, yet several of our Experts think we may be underestimating Law.

We have polled 20 top TV journalists from major media outlets, and seven of them are forecasting a nomination for Law: Michael Ausiello (TVLine), Eric Deggans (NPR), Lynn Elber (Associated Press), Bonnie Fuller (Hollywood Life), Kerr Lordygan (Rotten Tomatoes), Matt Roush (TV Guide Magazine) and Anne Thompson (IndieWire).

And there’s good reason to think he’ll get in. For starters, Emmy voters love movie stars who do TV, and Law is a respected film actor with two Oscar nominations: Best Supporting Actor for “The Talented Mr. Ripley” (1999) and Best Actor for “Cold Mountain” (2003).

Second, “The Young Pope” is a prestigious production from an internationally renowned filmmaker: Paolo Sorrentino, the man behind the Oscar winning Italian film “The Great Beauty” (2013) and the Oscar nominated “Youth.” And the cast also features Oscar winner Diane Keaton and Emmy winner James Cromwell, so it has the right pedigree to have gotten on voters’ radar.

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Law also plays an antihero in the series, which lately has been an advantage at the Emmys. Though empathy is still a big part of appealing to awards voters, James Gandolfini in “The Sopranos” opened the door for a string of corrupt villains and killers to take the awards spotlight, including multiple winner Bryan Cranston (“Breaking Bad”) and multiple nominee Kevin Spacey (“House of Cards”).

And you should never underestimate the power of HBO. The premium cable network has had at least one nominee for Best Movie/Mini Actor every year since 1992, and there were a couple of years (2008 and 2013) when all the nominees were from HBO, so that alone is likely to give Law a boost.

As of this writing another HBO star is currently favored to win Best Movie/Mini Actor: Robert De Niro (“The Wizard of Lies”). And to break through for a nom Law will have to get past a crowded field that also includes Riz Ahmed and John Turturro (“The Night Of”), Ewan McGregor (“Fargo”), Geoffrey Rush (“Genius”) and Benedict Cumberbatch (“Sherlock: The Lying Detective”), among others.

Do you think Law will earn a nomination? Could he even win?

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