Minnesota will make its presence known at this year’s Emmy Awards. Nominations, announced Thursday, went to Louie Anderson, who will try to repeat as supporting actor in a comedy (FX’s “Baskets”), and Cloquet native Jessica Lange, who is likely to win her fourth Emmy, this time as a sympathetic Joan Crawford in the FX miniseries “Feud.”
Her most daunting competition: co-star Susan Sarandon, who was almost as impressive as Lange, playing Bette Davis in the drama about the two Hollywood icons battling it out during filming of the cult classic “What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?”
Anderson’s biggest challenge: Alec Baldwin, who was recognized for his Donald Trump impression on “Saturday Night Live,” the long-running series that has one of its most critically acclaimed seasons ever, garnering 22 nods.
“If anyone can beat Baldwin, I can,” Anderson joked by phone after the announcement. He is performing in the Twin Cities this weekend.
The Minnesota-set drama “Fargo” was once again nominated for best limited series, with nods for this season’s stars, Carrie Coon and Ewan McGregor.
To the surprise of no one, Julia Louis-Dreyfus will gun for her sixth Emmy in a row for playing the beleaguered lead in “Veep.” If she pulls it off, she’ll break a record for wins in the same role, passing Candice Bergen as Murphy Brown and Don Knotts as Barney Fife.
“Veep” will look to three-peat as best comedy although it faces stiff competition from a hot newcomer, FX’s “Atlanta,” which triumphed at the Golden Globes. But don’t be surprised if the buzz grows stronger for Netflix’s “Master of None,” which has a good chance of building on Aziz Ansari and Alan Yang’s Emmy win last year for writing.
“Game of Thrones,” which doesn’t premiere until Sunday, was not in contention this year, leaving room for new royalty in the drama category.
Based solely on nominations, the front-runners would be appear to HBO’s “Westworld,” with 22, and Netflix’s “Stranger Things,” with 18, but don’t count out NBC’s “This Is Us,” which fared well in the acting categories. Sterling K. Brown is a heavy favorite to follow up his win last year for “The People v. O.J. Simpson.” Netflix’s “The Crown” will also be a strong contender with the kind of pomp and circumstance that made “Downton Abbey” a perennial favorite. The streaming service’s shows have never won best comedy or best drama.
No jaw-droppers emerged from the announcements, with the exception of “Baskets” star Zach Galifianakis making the cut as outstanding comedic actor, where he’ll face two-time winner Jeffrey Tambor (“Transparent”). As expected, HBO’s “The Wizard of Lies” fared well — it’s the clear front-runner for best movie — but you may be surprised to learn that its storied stars Robert De Niro and Michelle Pfeiffer are receiving their first Emmy nominations ever.
And give yourself a pat on the back if you predicted the unlikely duo of Snoop Dogg and Martha Stewart to be competing as best hosts of a reality program.
It’s also worth noting that, for the time since its 2009 premiere, no cast member was recognized for their work on “Modern Family.”
The Emmy Awards will be broadcast Sept. 17 on WCCO, Ch. 4, with host Stephen Colbert.