HBO viewer favorites like 'Mad Men' helped the channel pick up 81 Emmy nominations Thursday.
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LOS ANGELES — As HBO dominated the Emmy nominations Thursday morning, nominees in the outstanding miniseries or movie category ranked among the most honored shows.
FX's American Horror Story tied with Mad Men for the most nominations for a single program, with the gothic thriller earning 17 nods including outstanding miniseries or movie. The show starring Connie Britton and Jessica Lange — who both earned acting nods — is pitted against the History Channel's rating blockbuster Hatfields & McCoys, which earned 16 nominations including nods as outstanding miniseries or movie, and for lead actors Kevin Costner and Bill Paxton.
HBO's romantic drama Hemingway & Gellhorn earned 15 nominations, including in the miniseries or movie category, and nods for best actress for Nicole Kidman and best actor for Clive Owen.
Rounding out the nominees in the miniseries or movies category are PBS' Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia, which earned 13 nominations, and BBC America's police drama, Luther.
HBO picked up 81 nods for viewer favorites such as Boardwalk Empire and Game of Thrones as well as comedy newcomers Girls and Veep.
HBO heads into the 64th Prime Time Emmy Awards as the most lauded network, with second place going to CBS, which earned 60 nods, followed by PBS with 58 nominations.
As a result, there was a sense of deja "view" with the announcement: Many of the nominees have been perennial favorites in recent years, such as Mad Men, 30 Rock, and Modern Family, as well as Jon Hamm, Tina Fey, Michael C. Hall, and Jim Parsons.
But there were also some newcomers in the mix, including Showtime's freshman drama series Homeland and its stars, Damian Lewis and Claire Danes.
AMC's period drama Mad Men was one of the big winners of the morning, earning 17 nominations including nods for best drama, best actor for Jon Hamm, and best actress for Elisabeth Moss. Downton Abbey had 16 nominations and is another contender for best drama. The impressive showing for the historical British drama indicates that it got a boost from the strategic decision to move it from the miniseries category — which it won last year — to the dramatic series category.
Rounding out the best drama nominees are: Boardwalk Empire, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, and Homeland.
On the funny side of the aisle, Modern Family earned the most nominations with 14, including best comedy series and best supporting actress nominations for Julie Bowen and Sofia Vergara, and supporting actor nominations for Ed O'Neill, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Ty Burrell, and Eric Stonestreet.
Other nominees in the best comedy series category are The Big Bang Theory, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Girls, and Veep.
The nominations underscore the growing gap between network television and cable television, which raked in the majority of the nods in the marquee categories.
The Emmys are to be broadcast live on ABC on Sept. 23 at the Nokia Theatre in downtown Los Angeles, with comedian Jimmy Kimmel as host.