Lena Headey and Diana Rigg are this year’s only female actors nominated for Season 7 of “Game of Thrones.” For both actresses, this is their fourth nominations for their performance on HBO’s fantasy drama, and while this is Rigg’s ninth career Emmy bid, it is Headey’s fourth bid altogether. Can Headey and Rigg finally win their respective Emmy categories of Best Drama Supporting Actress and Best Drama Guest Actress?
Headey is nominated for playing Cersei Lannister and has submitted the episode “The Dragon and the Wolf,” the Season 7 finale that is also nominated for writing and directing. Headey was previously nominated in 2014, 2015 and 2016 and is now (alongside Rigg) the second most nominated actor from “Game of Thrones,” with Peter Dinklage still holding the record with seven nominations. Headey’s Emmy competition this year is Alexis Bledel (“The Handmaid’s Tale”), Millie Bobby Brown (“Stranger Things”), Ann Dowd (“The Handmaid’s Tale”), Vanessa Kirby (“The Crown”), Thandie Newton (“Westworld”) and Yvonne Strahovski (“The Handmaid’s Tale”).
Under the new Emmy system, Headey could benefit because voters can only tick off one winner instead of ranking the nominees, which means that there could be vote splitting between the three “The Handmaid’s Tale” actresses. Headey might benefit from the fact that “Game of Thrones” is not only the most nominated show of the year but also the most nominated program in Emmy history. With seven nominees in Best Drama Supporting Actress, someone only needs about 15% of the votes to win, and Headey might be able to get that 15%. Moreover, she has the most nominations of any actress in the race and could benefit from the overdue factor.
Rigg is nominated for playing Olenna Tyrell in the episode “The Queen’s Justice.” Her competition is Viola Davis (“Scandal”), Kelly Jenrette (“The Handmaid’s Tale”), Cherry Jones (“The Handmaid’s Tale”), Cicely Tyson (“How to Get Away With Murder”) and Samira Wiley (“The Handmaid’s Tale”). She is in a very similar situation like Headey, as she is the sole nominee from “Game of Thrones” in her category and could easily benefit from vote splitting, especially as she only needs 17% of the votes to win. “The Handmaid’s Tale” has three actresses nominated, and even Davis and Tyson could split votes, because while they are nominated for different programs, they still play mother and daughter on “How to Get Away With Murder.”
This marks Rigg’s ninth Emmy bid, and she previousy won in 1997 for her supporting actress performance in the limited series “Rebecca.” Her “GoT” character Olenna Tyrell was one of the main talking points during the seventh season since her character delivers one final blow before she exits in the classiest way possible. “Tell Cersei, I want her to know it was me!” is one of the most talked about lines of the past TV season and a line that “Game of Thrones” fans have been waiting for a very long time now. As this is the last chance to reward Rigg for her iconic performance, TV academy members could finally vote for her.
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