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HBO and Game of Thrones repeat as top Emmy nominees

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HBO’s Game of Thrones and Amazon’s Transparent topped the drama and comedy series nominations for the 67th annual Emmy Awards.

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HBO and its most popular series ever, Game of Thrones, again led all networks and series in prime-time Emmy nominations announced Thursday.

Each upped their totals from last year, with HBO nabbing 126 nods (compared to 99 last year) while GOT went from 19 to 24 nominations.

In the comedy series division, Amazon Instant Video struck it rich with 11 nominations for Transparent, starring Jeffrey Tambor as a gender-changing middle-aged dad. Sound familiar? The broadband “streaming” network also received a single nomination for the detective series Bosch, making it a quantum leap to 12 total compared to none last year.

HBO’s Veep was the next most-nominated comedy series, with nine, while AMC’s Mad Men and Neftlix’s House of Cards were the runner-ups in the drama series division with 11 nominations each.

Although again the leader in nominations, GOT has yet to take home a statue as best drama series. This will be the series’ fifth straight attempt. But Mad Men’s Jon Hamm holds the current record for Emmy futility. This is his eighth straight nomination for the role of Don Draper, but so far he’s never gone home a winner. Hamm also was nominated for his comedic performance as a charlatan evangelist in Netflix’s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

Joining GOT, Mad Men and House of Cards in the Best Drama Series category are AMC’s Breaking Bad prequel Better Call Saul, Showtime’s Homeland, PBS’ Downton Abbey and Netflix’s Orange is the New Black, which entered last year in the comedy series division. The 2014 winner was AMC’s Breaking Bad.

Besides Transparent and Veep, the Best Comedy Series nominees are ABC’s defending champion, Modern Family, FX’s Louie, NBC’s Parks and Recreation, HBO’s Silicon Valley and Netflix’s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. A win for Modern Family would give it a record six straight in the Best Comedy Series division. NBC’s Frasier is the only other comedy series to win five Emmys in a row.

The Best Limited Series nominees are FX’s American Horror Story: Freak Show (again running second to GOT with 19 total nominations), HBO’s Olive Kitteridge, Sundance TV’s The Honorable Woman PBS’ Wolf Hall and ABC’s American Crime, which was nominated in this category even though it’s been renewed for a second season. But like American Horror Story, it will feature a new storyline and characters.

In the Best Television Movie category, the nods went to HBO’s Bessie, Lifetime’s Grace of Monaco, HBO’s Hello Ladies: The Movie, National Geographic Channel’s Killing Jesus, HBO’s Nightingale and Acorn TV’s Agatha Christie’s Poirot: Curtain, Poirot’s Last Case

All told, cable or broadband streaming networks received 20 of the 25 nominations in these four categories,

Here are the major acting nominations.

Lead Actor, Drama Series

Jon Hamm, Mad Men
Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul
Kevin Spacey, House of Cards
Kyle Chandler, Netflix’s Bloodline
Jeff Daniels, HBO’s The Newsroom
Liev Schreiber, Showtime’s Ray Donovan

Lead Actress, Drama series

Claire Danes, Homeland
Robin Wright, House of Cards
Elisabeth Moss, Mad Men
Viola Davis, ABC’s How to Get Away with Murder
Taraji P. Henson, Fox’s Empire
Tatiana Maslany, BBC America’s Orphan Black

Lead Actress, Comedy Series

Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Edie Falco, Showtime’s Nurse Jackie
Amy Schumer, Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer
Lily Tomlin, Netflix’s Grace and Frankie
Lisa Kudrow, HBO’s The Comeback

Lead Actor, Comedy Series

Jeffrey Tambor, Transparent
Louie C.K., Louie
Anthony Anderson, ABC’s blackish
Matt LeBlanc, Showtime’s Episodes
Will Forte, Fox’s The Last Man On Earth
William H. Macy, Showtime’s Shameless
Don Cheadle, Showtime’s House of Lies

Lead Actor, Limited Series or Movie

Timothy Hutton, American Crime
Richard Jenkins, Olive Kitteridge
David Oyelowo, Nightingale
Mark Rylance, PBS’ Wolf Hall
Adrien Brody, History’s Houdini
Ricky Gervais, Netflix’s Derek

Lead Actress, Limited Series or Movie

Felicity Huffman, American Crime
Jessica Lange, American Horror Story: Freak Show
Maggie Gyllenhaal, The Honorable Woman
Frances McDormand, Olive Kitteridge
Queen Latifah, HBO’s Bessie
Emma Thompson, PBS’ Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

In the notable snubs department, FX’s The Americans again was treated like a Communist in the McCarthy blacklist era. It received just two nominations, neither in a major category. FX’s Justified also took the gas, getting zero nominations for its final season. That’s hard to believe. But the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences is the same organization that stiffed HBO’s The Wire from beginning to end.

Empire, a runaway midseason hit for Fox, failed to make the cut in the Best Drama Series category and received just three nominations overall. Henson, however, has to be considered the favorite to win in the Lead Actress category as Empire’s free-swinging Cookie Lyon.

The CW’s critically acclaimed Jane the Virgin got just one nomination, with its breakout star, Gina Rodriguez, getting shut out after winning a Golden Globe for her performance. The one and done Emmy nomination brigade also includes notable series such as History’s Vikings, NBC’s Community, AMC’s Halt and Catch Fire, WGN America’s Manhattan, CBS’ Mom and ABC’s Scandal.

An eye-popping number of other series also received just a single nomination, but in a major lead acting category. They are black-ish, The Comeback, Grace and Frankie, House of Lies, Nurse Jackie, Orphan Black, The Newsroom, Derek and Ray Donovan.

HBO’s 126 nominations tripled the total of any rival network. ABC came in second with 42. Other networks with 10 or more nominations are CBS and NBC (41 each), FX (38), Fox (35), Netflix (34), PBS (29), Comedy Central (25), AMC (24), Showtime (18), Amazon Instant Video (12) and Lifetime (10).

The major prime-time Emmys will be awarded on Sept. 20th, with Fox the presenting network this time.

For a complete list of the 2015 Emmy nominations, go here.

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