HBO was the big winner of the 68th annual Primetime Emmy Awards with wins for both outstanding drama and comedy with both Game of Thrones and Veep repeating lasts year’s wins.
With 38 total wins, Game of Thrones surpassed NBC’s Frasier as the winningest TV series in Emmys history. Besides winning outstanding drama, Game of Thrones also won best writing for executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss for “Battle of the Bastards,” and best director for Miguel Sapochnik for the same episode.
Despite several cast members being nominated in the supporting actor and actress categories – including Kit Harington, Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke and Maisie Williams—Game of Thrones lost in the supporting actor categories to Ben Mendelsohn of Netflix’s Bloodlines and Maggie Smith of PBS’ Downton Abbey, who took her fourth Emmy for playing Dowager Countess Violet Crawley.
Besides winning best comedy, Veep’s leading lady, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, was named outstanding actress in a comedy for the fifth year in a row. Transparent’s Jeffrey Tambor, who’s also won for The Larry Sanders Show and Arrested Development, was named outstanding actor in a comedy for the second year in row.
Both lead actor wins went to up-and-coming young talent. Rami Malek was the surprise – perhaps no one more surprised than him—winner of the outstanding actor in a drama for USA’s Mr. Robot, which also was nominated for outstanding drama. Tatiana Maslany took the trophy for BBC America’s Orphan Black.
FX also had a strong showing, matching HBO’s six wins with six of its own. Those wins were led by The People v. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story. The retelling of the 1996 OJ Simpson murder trial was named outstanding limited series, and Courtney B. Vance, Sterling K. Brown and Sarah Paulson were named best lead and supporting actors and lead actress, respectively. The one acting category American Crime Story didn’t win went to Regina King who was named outstanding supporting actress in a limited series for ABC’s similarly named American Crime for the second year in a row.
FX also won best supporting actor in a comedy award for Louie Anderson for his role playing Zach Galifianakis’ mother in FX’s Baskets. Saturday Night Live’s Kate McKinnon took that win on the actress’ side.
Comedy Central’s Key & Peele, which ended its run last September, was named outstanding variety sketch comedy, while HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver won outstanding variety talk series.
See the full list of winners here.