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2016 Emmy Predictions: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or a Movie

Among the many "People v. O.J. Simpson" nominees, who's got the edge?

Hugh Laurie as Richard Roper; group - The Night Manager _ Season 1, Episode 6

Des Willie /The Ink Factory/AMC

Quick Hits

  • Last Year’s Winner: Bill Murray, “Olive Kitteridge”
  • Was It an Upset? No
  • Still Eligible? Not in this category.
  • Hot Streak: “American Horror Story” has four nominations in four years, but missed out on a nod in 2014. Denis O’Hare and Finn Wittrock were both nominated last year (presumably to make up for the previous omission).
  • Fun Fact: Over the years, there haven’t been a lot of repeat contenders in this category. Beau Bridges has the most wins ever — with two (“The Positively True Adventures of the Alleged Texas Cheerleader-Murdering Mom” in 1993, which, obviously, we all desperately need to see, and “The Second Civil War” in ’97), and only four people have scored more than two nominations in their lifetimes.

READ MORE: David Schwimmer on ‘The People v. O.J. Simpson,’ Why Robert Kardashian Believed O.J. and the Dangers of Fame

A two-horse race with a few potential spoilers, this race — like so many this year — comes down to the old guard vs. the new. Hugh Laurie was nominated six times for his lead performance on “House,” but he never won. Still, the respect is there, as he was wisely acknowledged for a nuanced turn as the unpredictable antagonist in “The Night Manager.” But he’s going up against the fresh face of Sterling K. Brown, up for his first Emmy in a breakout turn on “The People v. O.J. Simpson.” Brown earned more and more critical praise as the episodes rolled up, as he brought compassion, depth and complexity to what could have been a mere stand-in part. He made that would-be audience surrogate so much more.

That being said, a few fan favorites could also become threats here. Bokeem Woodbine had a big year on “Fargo,” and the FX anthology has a huge support base within the Academy (which could also help Jesse Plemons). John Travolta could tote his two Oscar nominations to steal some votes for a role either loved or hated, while David Schwimmer could get some love for putting “Friends” behind him with an empathetic turn in the same series.

Below are IndieWire TV Critic Ben Travers’ predictions for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or a Movie, which will be updated throughout the awards season. Make sure to keep checking IndieWire for all the latest buzz and highlights from the 2016 race, and read the rest of the predictions in all the categories, as well.

The Nominees:

  1. Sterling K. Brown, “The People v. O.J. Simpson”
  2. Hugh Laurie, “The Night Manager”
  3. Jesse Plemons, “Fargo”
  4. David Schwimmer, “The People v. O.J. Simpson”
  5. John Travolta, “The People v. O.J. Simpson”
  6. Bokeem Woodbine, “Fargo”

Will Win: Sterling K. Brown, “The People v. O.J. Simpson”
Could Win: Hugh Laurie, “The Night Manager”
Should Win: Hugh Laurie, “The Night Manager”

READ MORE: John Travolta and Courtney B. Vance on the Love Affairs in ‘The People v. O.J. Simpson’ That Did and Should Have Happened

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Matt R

Louie Anderson in Baskets!

Michael W

Courtney B.Vance nails Johnnie Cochran!!!!! Can’t stop watching.


Michael W – Courtney as Cochrane is pure genius in casting. I can’t stop watching either! He’s addictive.


Not only is he not listed, but who will probably WIN is Idris Elba for Beasts Of No Nation

William McDonald

I am not surprised by the depth of Courtney Vance’s performance as Cochran. He has been underrated for some time and this role gives him the opportunity to display his emotional range. Sarah Paulson as Marcia Clark has also been outstanding on this series.


Um, hello? Bokeem Woodbine for Fargo?

    Jonathan Spencer Brown

    Exactly! Bokeem Woodbine as Mike Milligan is the best thing on TV.

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