Brand New Programs, Nominees Burst onto Emmy Awards Scene

By Cox, Ted | Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), July 19, 2002 | Go to article overview

Brand New Programs, Nominees Burst onto Emmy Awards Scene


Cox, Ted, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)


Byline: Ted Cox Daily Herald TV/Radio Columnist

The bottleneck in Emmy nominations burst open Thursday, allowing a flood of new faces and new shows to compete for television's top honor.

HBO's "Six Feet Under" led all shows with 23 nominations, and actors Michael Chiklis of the cable cop drama "The Shield" and Bernie Mac of the Fox sitcom that bears his name also earned breakthrough nominations in their first seasons.

The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences has tried to reform its Emmy selection process over the years, but it had trouble opening up the nominations. Those nominations were made by specialty, with editors choosing editors and writers choosing writers. In some categories - especially in acting - the academy resisted change and kept picking out the same names.

This season, with "The Sopranos" on hiatus for more than a year, and Emmy favorites like John Lithgow and Andre Braugher on the sidelines with their shows canceled, the academy was compelled to pick new faces.

The biggest influx came in the category of best actor in a drama, where rookie shows produced four of the five nominees. In addition to Chiklis, Kiefer Sutherland made it from "24," as did both Michael C. Hall and Peter Krause, who play the mortician brothers on "Six Feet Under." They joined Martin Sheen of "The West Wing." Former Emmy winner Dennis Franz and "NYPD Blue" got shut out.

"Six Feet Under" and "24" also joined "CSI" as new nominees for best drama, along with longtime Emmy favorites "West Wing" and "Law & Order."

The biggest surprise was probably the best-comedy nomination extended to "Curb Your Enthusiasm," the HBO series starring "Seinfeld" co-creator Larry David. Prickly and uncompromising in its humor, it nevertheless bumped "Malcolm in the Middle. …

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