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HBO's Baltimore productions 'VEEP,' 'Game Change' get some solid Emmy notice

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UPDATES WITH MORE BALTIMORE NOMINEES: HBO's Baltimore productions "VEEP"  and "Game Change" got some solid Emmy notice with the comedy earning a best actress nomination for Julia Louis-Dreyfus and the made-for-TV movie about the 2008 presidential election picking up best actor and actress nominations for Julianne Moore and Woody Harrelson.

Overall, "VEEP" received three nominations including one for best comedy, while "Game Change"  earned additional nominations for Ed Harris as best supporting actor in a movie or miniseries and as best movie or miniseries.

The nomination in best comedy is a big one for "VEEP" in its first year, as the series did not initially generate big buzz. But along with"Girls," which also picked up a nomination as best comedy, "VEEP" gave HBO two new comedies it can be proud of. "VEEP" has been renewed for a second season and is expected to begin shooting in Baltimore in September.

One of the three nominations is for casting and it includes Baltimore's Pat Moran, who embodies the best of Maryland's film and TV production community.
 
The "Game Change" nominations reinforce the perception of HBO as the place to go for political drama that's hard-wired into the culture. No movie or mini-series generated the kind of conversation about political leadership and the lack of it on the 2008 Republican ticket like this film.

Overall, HBO led all networks and channels with 81 nominations. That's down from 104 last year, but that is more a reflection of other channels trying to create their own quality content than it is any slippage at HBO.

FX, which had six nominations last year, has 26 this year. AMC has 34 nominations.

CBS led the broadcast networks with 60, but PBS received 58 nominations including  16 for "Downton Abbey" in the best drama category. (Last year, it competed in the movie andmini-series field.)

Outside of "Downton Abbey," it was all cable in the best drama realm where "Mad Men" again led the field with 17 nominations. CBS' "The Good Wife" didn't make the cut this year.

Other top drama nominees are: "Game of Thrones"(HBO), "Breaking Bad"(AMC), "Downton Abbey" (PBS),"Homeland" (Showtime) and "Boardwalk Empire" (HBO).

One of the few bright spots for network TV was provided by ABC's  "Modern Family,"which again led all comedies with 14 nominations including one for best comedy, one for Baltimore native Julie Bowen as best supporting actress in a comedy series and another for Baltimore native Jason Winer's dierction of the episode titled "Virgin Territory."

Bowen won an Emmy last year, while "Modern Family" took home the statue as best comedy the past two years. Winer won a Director's Guild Award for his work on the pilot for "Modern Family," but this would be his first Emmy for directing this series.
 
Other local favorites who picked up nominations Thursday include Idris Elba, of HBO's "The Wire"for his work on BBC in "Luther," and Giancarlo Esposito, once of NBC's "Homicide: Life on the Street," for his performance in "Breaking Bad."

Here's what the comedy competition looks like for "VEEP" and "Modern Family":

 COMEDY SERIES
“Curb Your Enthusiasm” (HBO)
“The Big Bang Theory” (CBS)
“Girls” (HBO)
“Modern Family” (ABC)
“30 Rock” (NBC)“Veep” (HBO)

 

ACTRESS COMEDY SERIES
Lena Dunham, “Girls” (HBO)
Melissa McCarthy, “Mike & Molly” (CBS)
Zooey Deschanel, “New Girl” (Fox)
Edie Falco, “Nurse Jackie” (Showtime)
Amy Poehler, “Parks and Recreation” (NBC)
Tina Fey, “30 Rock” (NBC), Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “Veep” (HBO)

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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