Magazine article Variety

Lily Tomlin: 1974, 'Lily'

Magazine article Variety

Lily Tomlin: 1974, 'Lily'

Article excerpt

IN 1974, LILY TOMLIN was nominated for two Emmy Awards for her CBS variety special entitled "Lily" - variety special itself, as well as writing for a variety special. Though Tomlin had been nominated for Emmys before, including for her previous CBS special entitled "Lily Tomlin," she had no expectations of winning and almost didn't even show up to the ceremony "It was really only at the prodding of my lawyer that I went," Tomlin says. "Everybody all night had been saying, 'This is the night of my life!' But I kept saying this was not the night of my life because I had had a great baked potato on Wednesday!" Tomlin won both of her categories that year, but it wasn't her most memorable ceremony - that honor goes to the 1984 ceremony when she showed up as her notorious character, Ernestine. danielle turchiano

How did you feel about your chances going into Emmy night in 1974?

I wasn't even going to go to the Emmys because with the first special I had done huge ratings, but with the second special, the ratings were about half. They had put a Johnny Carson roast against me, and while the ratings were still good, they were nothing like what I had gotten that first year. So I was bereft; I thought my career was over! I wouldn't even talk to my agent, and I thought they didn't really want to talk to me.

What did it feel like to share the win with the other writers and producers on your special?

It was absolutely wonderful, and I remember the elation, but unfortunately since I hadn't planned to go, I didn't have half the people from the show with me. So I had a dinner at my house afterwards, and I got little Emmy pins for everybody. …

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