By Seth Adam, GLAAD’s Vice President of Communications
GLAAD today applauded the list of nominees for the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards, which was among the most LGBT-inclusive list in Emmy history. Laverne Cox became the first transgender person to be nominated for an Emmy in an acting category. Cox received a nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for her role as Sophia Burset in the hit Netflix Original Series Orange is the New Black. Cox also received the Stephen F. Kolzak Award earlier this year at the 25th Annual GLAAD Media Awards.
“From gracing the cover of TIME Magazine, to now becoming the first openly transgender person to be nominated for an Emmy in an acting category, Laverne Cox continues to break barriers,” said GLAAD President & CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. “Today, countless transgender youth will hear the message that they can be who they are and still achieve their dreams – nothing is out of reach. Laverne’s success on a hit series is a clear indication that audiences are ready for more trans characters on television.”
This year’s list of nominees also included many openly LGB actors. Matt Bomer, Joe Mantello and Jim Parsons are all nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a TV Movie or Mini-Series for their work in The Normal Heart. Parsons was also nominated for Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series for The Big Bang Theory. Out comedian and actress Kate McKinnon received her first nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her work on Saturday Night Live. Sarah Paulson received a nomination for Outstanding Actress in a TV Movie or Mini-Series for American Horror Story: Coven. Jesse Tyler Ferguson received another nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series for playing a gay dad on Modern Family and Nathan Lane received a nomination for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series for his role on Modern Family.
LGBT characters and storylines were also popular with voters. Andre Braugher received a nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy for playing an out cop on Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Orange is the New Black‘s Taylor Schilling was nominated for Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series and both Uzo Aduba and Natasha Lyonne were nominated for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series. All play out characters on the show. Mark Ruffalo also received a nomination for Outstanding Actor in a TV Movie of Mini-Series for his role as a HIV/AIDS activist in The Normal Heart.
Orange is the New Black, which received the GLAAD Media Award earlier this year for Outstanding Comedy Series, was nominated for Outstanding Comedy Series along with Modern Family. The Normal Heart received a nomination for Outstanding TV Movie. Other LGBT-inclusive nominees include Game of Thrones, Downton Abbey, and Saturday Night Live.
All of the nominees for Outstanding Reality Competition Program (The Amazing Race, Project Runway, Dancing with the Stars, So You Think You Can Dance, Top Chef, The Voice) featured LGBT contestants or guests. Tim Gunn and Jane Lynch were each nominated for Outstanding Host for a Reality Program.
Behind the camera, out directors Paris Barclay and Jodie Foster were nominated for Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series for episodes of Glee and Orange is the New Black, respectively. Ryan Murphy was nominated for Outstanding Directing for a TV-Movie or Mini-Series for The Normal Heart.