Fan favorite "Game of Thrones," went into Sunday's show with
a leading 23 nominations and won a total of 12 Emmys, including
for best drama series, directing and writing. It beat off a
challenge from USA network's "Mr. Robot," as well as Netflix's
dark Washington D.C. drama "House of Cards."
"We're standing up here because George Martin created the world
that we all live and play in," said co-creator Dan Weiss.
True crime was also a big winner.
"The People v. O.J. Simpson," FX's 10-hour dramatization of the
former football player's 1995 double murder trial and
sensational acquittal won nine Emmys, including for best limited
series and for actors Sarah Paulson, Courtney B. Vance and
Sterling K. Brown.
Paulson, who played losing Los Angeles trial prosecutor Marcia
Clark in the show, brought Clark along with her to the Emmys.
"The more I learned about the real Marcia Clark... the more I
had to recognize that I along with the rest of the world had
been superficial and careless in my judgment," said Paulson,
accepting her first Emmy.
Host Jimmy Kimmel opened Sunday's show with a string of jokes
about Republican presidential contender and former "Celebrity
Apprentice" star Donald Trump.
"If Donald Trump gets elected and he builds that wall, the first
person we are throwing over it is Mark Burnett," quipped Kimmel,
addressing Burnett, the British producer who created "Celebrity
"Veep" star Julia Louis-Dreyfus won her fifth straight Emmy for
her role in the satirical White House comedy in which she plays
a graspingly ambitious and inept president battling to stay in
Louis-Dreyfus apologized for what she called "the current
political climate," seven weeks before the presidential
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"I think that 'Veep' has torn down the wall between comedy and
politics. Our show started out as a political satire but it now
feels like a sobering documentary," she quipped, in an oblique
reference to the presidential campaign.
Sunday's Emmys were notable for having a record 21 nominees of
color, in contrast to this year's all-white Oscars acting lineup.
Several took home Emmys, many for the first time. Along "O.J.
Simpson" winners Brown and Vance, Egyptian-American Rami Malek beat
veterans Kevin Spacey and Liev Schreiber to scoop his first Emmy for
playing a socially inept computer hacker in "Mr. Robot."
"Oh my god. Please tell me you are seeing this too," said a stunned
Indian-American Aziz Ansari shared a writing Emmy with
Asian-American Alan Yang for their comedy series "Master of None,"
while black actress Regina King won for her role in "American Crime"
and African-American comedians Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele
were honored for their sketch series "Key & Peele."
Other Emmy newcomers included Canadian Tatiana Maslany, a surprise
best drama actress winner who beat out presumed front runner Robin
Wright for playing a woman with multiple cloned personalities in
Elsewhere, Jeffrey Tambor won best comedy actor for a second time
for his role as a father who transitions to a woman in Amazon's
"Saturday Night Live" comedian Kate McKinnon, who plays Democratic
U.S. presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, won supporting comedy
actress, and John Oliver's biting "Last Week Tonight with John
Oliver" won the Emmy for variety talk series.
(Additional reporting by Piya Sinha-Roy and Lisa Richwine; Editing
by Sandra Maler and Mary Milliken)
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