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Emmys 2016: Game of Thrones breaks record for highest number of wins

Game of Thrones

Story by Jack Foley

HBO’S fantasy juggernaut Game of Thrones has broken the record for the highest number of Emmy Awards won by any fictional series.

The series, based on George R. R. Martin’s books, picked up three awards at Sunday’s ceremony, including outstanding drama series. It also won an award for outstanding directing for a drama series, for the Miguel Sapochnik directed Battle of the Bastards.

The same episode was triumphant in the outstanding writing for a drama series category, where David Benioff and D. B. Weiss were the winners/

The awards haul means that the show’s total number of awards now stands at 38, one more than the previous record of 37 held by the comedy series Frasier.

Another multiple winner was veteran British actress Dame Maggie Smith, who won outstanding supporting actress in a drama series for her role in Downton Abbey. The prize marks the third time that Dame Maggie has won an Emmy for her portrayal of Violet Crawley – and she still has yet to attend the ceremony in person to collect her award.

Further British success came in the best made for TV movie category, where BBC One’s Sherlock took the award for its special episode The Abominable Bride.

And BBC spy thriller “The Night Manager”: saw its Danish director, Susanne Bier, win the prize for best directing in a limited series.

Bier, who was the only female nominee in the category, told BBC Breakfast afterwards: “This is such a traditional men’s world, and I hope the fact a woman director has won this prestigious prize is going to mean that more non-conventional series and movies are going to be directed by women.”

And yet more British success came when John Oliver won best variety talk series for his HBO series Last Week Tonight, beating fellow British nominee James Corden, who was nominated for The Late Late Show.

Other key prizes went to political comedy Veep, which came up trumps in two categories: outstanding comedy series (which it won for the second year in a row) and outstanding leady comedy actress, which Julia Louis-Dreyfus took for the fifth time.

In her acceptance speech, Louis-Dreyfus said: “Our show started out as political satire but now feels like a sobering documentary [in reference to the current electoral battle in the US and the emergence of Donald Trump].”

She went on to dedicate her award to her father, who died on Friday.

Jeffrey Tambor won the outstanding comedy actor for his role in the Amazon series Transparent. It was the second year in succession that Tambor has been recognised for his portrayal of a transgender woman.

Accepting his award, Tambor encouraged the industry to offer more opportunities to the trans community, saying: “I would not be unhappy were I the last cisgender male to play a transgender female on television. We have work to do.”

Another big winner was mini-series The People vs OJ Simpson, a dramatisation of the OJ Simpson trial of the 1990s, which was broadcast on BBC Two in the UK.

The show won a total of five trophies, including outstanding limited series. It also picked up acting trophies for Sarah Paulson, Sterling K Brown and Courtney B Vance.

There were even a couple of surprises on the night. Rami Malek won outstanding lead actor in a drama series for his role in Mr Robot, which marked the first time an actor from an ethnic minority has won the award since 1998.

While Tatiana Maslany claimed the outstanding leading actress in a drama prize for her performance in Orphan Black.

Malek triumphed ahead of the likes of Kevin Spacey (for House of Cards), Liev Schreiber (for Ray Donovan) and Bob Odenkirk (for Better Call Saul).

Maslany, meanwhile, triumphed ahead of the likes of Viola Davis (for How to Get Away With Murder), Claire Danes (for Homeland) and Taraji P Henson (for Empire).

Netflix series Master of None scored its first Emmy award, winning outstanding writing for a comedy series, prompting the show’s co-writer Alan Yang to call for better Asian representation on screen in his acceptance speech.

The main winners and nominees at a glance (winners in bold)

Outstanding drama series
Winner: Game of Thrones
The Americans
House of Cards
Downton Abbey
Better Call Saul
Mr Robot
Homeland

Outstanding comedy series
Winner: Veep
Transparent
Silicon Valley
Modern Family
Master of None
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Black-ish

Outstanding limited series
Winner: The People v OJ Simpson
American Crime
Fargo
The Night Manager
Roots

Best television movie
Winner: Sherlock: The Abominable Bride
A Very Murray Christmas
All the Way
Confirmation
Luther

Outstanding lead actor in a drama series
Winner: Rami Malek – Mr Robot
Kyle Chandler – Bloodline
Bob Odenkirk – Better Call Saul
Matthew Rhys – The Americans
Liev Schreiber – Ray Donovan
Kevin Spacey – House of Cards

Outstanding lead actress in a drama series
Winner: Tatiana Maslany – Orphan Black
Viola Davis – How to Get Away With Murder
Claire Danes – Homeland
Taraji P Henson – Empire
Keri Russell – The Americans
Robin Wright – House of Cards

Outstanding lead actor in a comedy series
Winner: Jeffrey Tambor – Transparent
Anthony Anderson – Black-ish
Aziz Ansari – Master of None
Will Forte – The Last Man on Earth
William H Macy – Shameless
Thomas Middleditch – Silicon Valley

Outstanding lead actress in a comedy series
Winner: Julia Louis-Dreyfus – Veep
Ellie Kemper – Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Laurie Metcalf – Getting On
Tracee Ellis Ross – Black-ish
Amy Schumer – Inside Amy Schumer
Lily Tomlin – Grace and Frankie

Outstanding lead actor in a limited series or movie
Winner: Courtney B Vance – The People v OJ Simpson
Bryan Cranston – All the Way
Benedict Cumberbatch – Sherlock: The Abominable Bride
Idris Elba – Luther
Cuba Gooding Jr – The People v OJ Simpson
Tom Hiddleston – The Night Manager

Outstanding lead actress in a limited series or movie
Winner: Sarah Paulson – The People v OJ Simpson
Kirsten Dunst – Fargo
Felicity Huffman – American Crime
Audra McDonald – Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill
Lili Taylor – American Crime
Kerry Washington – Confirmation

Outstanding supporting actor in a comedy series
Winner: Louie Anderson – Baskets
Andre Braugher – Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Ty Burrell – Modern Family
Tituss Burgess – Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Tony Hale – Veep
Keegan-Michael Key -Key and Peele
Matt Walsh – Veep

Outstanding supporting actress in a comedy series
Winner: Kate McKinnon – Saturday Night Live
Anna Chlumsky – Veep
Gaby Hoffmann – Transparent
Allison Janney – Mom
Judith Light – Transparent
Niecy Nash – Getting On

Outstanding supporting actor in a drama series
Winner: Ben Mendelsohn – Bloodline
Jonathan Banks – Better Call Saul
Peter Dinklage – Game of Thrones
Kit Harington – Game of Thrones
Michael Kelly – House of Cards
Jon Voight – Ray Donovan

Outstanding supporting actress in a drama series
Winner: Dame Maggie Smith – Downton Abbey
Emilia Clarke – Game of Thrones
Lena Headey – Game of Thrones
Maura Tierney – The Affair
Maisie Williams – Game of Thrones
Constance Zimmer – UnREAL

Outstanding supporting actor in a limited series or movie
Winner: Sterling K Brown – The People v OJ Simpson
Hugh Laurie – The Night Manager
Jesse Plemons – Fargo
David Schwimmer – The People v OJ Simpson
John Travolta – The People v OJ Simpson
Bokeem Woodbine – Fargo

Outstanding supporting actress in a limited series or movie
Winner: Regina King – American Crime
Kathy Bates – American Horror Story: Hotel
Olivia Colman – The Night Manager
Melissa Leo – All the Way
Sarah Paulson – American Horror Story: Hotel
Jean Smart – Fargo

Outstanding television movie
Winner: Sherlock: The Abominable Bride
A Very Murray Christmas
All the Way
Confirmation
Luther

Outstanding reality competition series
Winner: The Voice
The Amazing Race
American Ninja Warrior
Dancing With the Stars
Project Runway
Top Chef

Outstanding variety talk series
Last Week Tonight With John Oliver
Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee
Jimmy Kimmel Live
The Late Late Show With James Corden
Real Time With Bill Maher
The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon