Rachel Brosnahan (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”) has a commanding lead in our Emmy predictions for Best Comedy Actress. The vast majority of Gold Derby’s users are betting on her to win, giving her leading odds of 2/11. But one can’t help but wonder, would she still have such a commanding lead if she had to battle Julia Louis-Dreyfus (“Veep”)? Vote in our poll at the bottom of this post.
Louis-Dreyfus won Best Comedy Actress six times in a row (2012-2017) for playing inept politician Selena Meyer in “Veep.” No one has ever won the category that many times, and certainly not for the same role. Louis-Dreyfus’s record is even more impressive because she also won that race in 2006 for “The New Adventures of Old Christine,” and she won Best Comedy Supporting Actress for “Seinfeld” back in 1996. Those eight Emmys mean she is tied with Cloris Leachman for the most acting wins ever at the Primetime Emmys.
But it’s rare to discover a breakout star like Brosnahan, who is reminiscent of 2007 Best Comedy Actress champ America Ferrera (“Ugly Betty”) and 2016 Best Drama Actress victor Tatiana Maslany (“Orphan Black”) in how quickly she has made a name for herself with her breakthrough role. She’s the reigning Golden Globe and Critics’ Choice winner for her performance as the title character, a wife and mother who becomes a defiant stand-up comic.
“Maisel” is one of the most nominated comedies of the year with 14 bids (behind only “Atlanta” with 16). And on top of that, Brosnahan was a surprise Emmy nominee in 2015 for Best Drama Guest Actress for “House of Cards,” so the TV academy liked her before it was cool.
Louis-Dreyfus is out of the running this year because she was diagnosed with cancer in the fall of 2017, and her treatment delayed production on the seventh and final season of “Veep.” So we won’t get to see a showdown between the two leading ladies — at least not this year.
After six straight wins Emmy voters might have been ready to move on to a new winner even if Louis-Dreyfus were around this year. Then again, it might have been tempting to reward her for her “Veep” swan song and complete an undefeated streak that seems unlikely ever to be repeated.
It’s impossible to know for sure how Louis-Dreyfus would have fared for a season that hasn’t aired yet, but what do you think? Given her history and Brosnahan’s breakout, which one of them do you think would have won in a head-to-head match-up?
Be sure to make your Emmy predictions today so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions as often as you like until just before winners are announced on September 17. Be sure to also predict winners for the Creative Arts ceremonies slated for September 8 and 9. And join in the fun debate over the 2018 Emmy taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our television forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.