The Hulu series adapted from Margaret Atwood's
1985 book won best drama, the most prestigious award of the
night, and seven other awards including best drama actress for
The recognition at TV's highest honors was a breakout moment for
Hulu, which had failed to win the critical acclaim and buzz
generated by Netflix Inc and Amazon.com Inc as streaming
services uprooted traditional Hollywood. "Handmaid's Tale"
triumphed over Netflix's supernatural thriller "Stranger
Things," NBC's "This is Us" and others.
Overall, longtime Emmy heavyweight HBO won the most awards with
29 wins, even without its mega-hit "Game of Thrones." The
reigning best drama winner was not eligible because it aired too
late in the year for consideration.
HBO's "Veep" took home the best comedy trophy for the third
straight year, and "Big Little Lies" was named best limited
"Thank you to HBO for never wavering in your belief in us," star
Nicole Kidman said on stage as she accepted the award for best
actress in a limited series. HBO is owned by Time Warner Inc.
The prestige and publicity surrounding the Emmys can help
networks attract new viewers in a crowded TV marketplace where
broadcasters, cable channels and digital platforms are battling
"Handmaid's Tale" already has drawn more new subscribers to Hulu
than any other original or acquired show, Hulu said at a
Television Critics Association event in July.
Its creators said Hulu reaped the rewards by taking on a risky
Writer Bruce Miller credited Hulu with supporting a
controversial series about a society in which women are forced
into sexual servitude. Hulu is owned by traditional media
companies Walt Disney Co, 21st Century Fox, Comcast Corp and
"There were so many times I presented something or pitched
something," Miller told reporters backstage, "and I was sure
they were going to say there was no way you can do that on
"They were always enthusiastic and encouraging," he added. "It's
not an easy show to make. It's rough stuff. They were brave and
committed to making the book into a television show."
Netflix won 20 Emmys including best supporting drama actor for
John Lithgow in "The Crown" and best comedy writing "Master of
Broadcast network NBC, owned by Comcast, won 15 awards. Its
comedy sketch show "Saturday Night Live" collected nine.
(Reporting by Lisa Richwine; Editing by Mary Milliken)
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