Los Angeles, CA – HBO topped the list of winners at the 59th Creative Arts Emmy Awards with 15 golden statuettes, followed by NBC, which led the broadcast networks with 12.
The ceremony was held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, and hosted by comedian-actor Carlos Mencia, star of the Comedy Central series Mind of Mencia. The event will air as a two-hour special on Saturday, September 15 at 8:00 p.m. (ET/PT), on E! Entertainment Television,
Presenters included two dozen renowned television actors: Kristen Bell (Heroes, Veronica Mars), David Boreanaz (Bones), Miley Cyrus (Hannah Montana), Billy Ray Cyrus (Hannah Montana), Tim Daly (Private Practice), Josh Duhamel (Las Vegas), Omar Epps (House), America Ferrera (Ugly Betty), Marcia Gay Harden (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit), Tom Green (Tom Green Live!), Seth Green (Robot Chicken, Family Guy), Greg Grunberg (Heroes), Rex Lee (Entourage), Mekhi Phifer (ER), Jennifer Morrison (House), Rob Morrow (Numb3rs), Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother), Emily Procter (CSI: Miami), Yeardley Smith (The Simpson’s), Maura Tierney (ER), Stanley Tucci (ER), Blair Underwood (Dirty Sexy Money), Michael Urie (Ugly Betty) and Rainn Wilson (The Office).
The majority of the Creative Arts Emmy Awards, which honor excellence in more than sixty categories, are dedicated to key technical disciplines and behind-the-scenes crafts essential to television production—including picture editing, sound editing, sound mixing, special visual effects, cinematography, art direction, music, stunts and more.
Awards are also handed out for animation, reality series and other programming, and four acting categories. Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series went to Leslie Caron for Law & Order: Special Victims Unit; Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series went to Elaine Stritch for 30 Rock; Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series went to John Goodman for Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip; and Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series went to Stanley Tucci for Monk.
Special Governors Honors to Idol Gives Back and HBO's
Addiction Project, Founders Award to Rich Frank
The prestigious Governors Award, which is given to individuals or organizations committed to important social causes, went to two companies: Fox, for its “Idol Gives Back” campaign, and HBO for “The Addiction Project.”
Another special honor, the Syd Cassyd Founders Award, was presented to renowned entertainment executive Richard Frank, former president of Walt Disney Studios, who served an unprecedented three terms as president of the Television Academy.
The sole directing honor, Outstanding Directing for Nonfiction Programming, went to Spike Lee for the HBO film When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts, about the devastation and aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
The evening’s one writing category, Outstanding Writing for Nonfiction Programming, was won by James Sanders and Ric Burns for the PBS’s Andy Warhol: A Documentary Film, part of its American Masters series.
The Outstanding Children’s Program was presented to Private Worlds: Kids with Autism, an installment of Nickelodeon’s Nick News with Linda Ellerbee.
Cartoon Network’s Where’s Lazlo? was named Outstanding Animated Program (For Programming One Hour or More) and Comedy Central’s long-running comedy South Park was recognized for Outstanding Animated Program (For Programming Less Than One Hour) for the episode titled “Make Love, Not Warcraft.”
Outstanding Reality Program was presented to the Bravo production Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List.
Commercial Noms Screenings Entertain
The seven nominees for Outstanding Commercial were screened in their entirety throughout the evening. The winner was “Animals,” an American Express spot starring Ellen DeGeneres and a menagerie of creatures depicted as members of her talk-show staff.
Outstanding Nonfiction Special was given to the HBO production Ghosts of Abu Ghraib, which examined the scandal surrounding ill treatment of detainees by American military personnel at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.
In nonfiction programming, Outstanding Nonfiction Series went to the acclaimed Discovery Channel production Planet Earth. Exceptional Merit in Nonfiction Filmmaking had two winners: A Lion in the House, a production for the PBS series Independent Lens, and HBO’s When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts.
Outstanding Special Class Program was presented to The 60th Annual Tony Awards.
The Award for Outstanding Creative Achievement in Interactive Programming went to abcfamily.com, for the Fallen Alternate Reality Game.
Leading the recipients of multiple awards was the HBO film Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, which earned five. Discovery’s Planet Earth and NBC’s Tony Bennett: An American Classic took home four each.
In a statement, Dick Wolf, executive producer of Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, said, “I’m both honored and humbled by the Academy’s recognition of Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. This project has been both a labor of love and a labor of conscience for everyone who worked on it. I thank the incredible team of professionals who made this dream a reality.”
Endearingly Brash Elaine Stritch Sparks the Gala
with a Rousing Acceptance
A high point of the evening came early when Elaine Stritch, the legendary Broadway, film and television performer—and a notoriously salty raconteur known for sharing unexpurgated anecdotes—took the stage to accept her award for an episode of 30 Rock.
On 30, Stritch portrayed Colleen Donaghy, brassy mother of Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin), the show’s preening, patronizing network executive.
“It’s kind of obvious how long I’ve been in this profession, and I can’t get over that I still feel the way I feel,” said Stritch, who is eighty-two. “It is un-f---ing-believeable!”
Continuing, she said, “I broke my foot, I’m a recovering alcoholic, I’m a riddled diabetic, I’ve got laryngitis—but I’ve just won an Emmy!”
The honor marked Stritch’s third career Emmy and fourth career nomination. She previously won for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama series for a 1993 episode of Law & Order, and for Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program for the 2004 HBO special Elaine Stritch: At Liberty.
She was also nominated in 1991 for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Movie or Miniseries for the ABC production An Inconvenient Woman.
When she arrived in the pressroom, Stritch, dressed in a leopard-print outfit that featured a matching hat and sleeve cuffs, and supporting herself with a cane due to her injured foot, continued to charm.
Asked how she broke her foot, Stritch said, “I lost my balance at an AA meeting—I should have stayed home and had a drink!”
Describing her 30 Rock collaborators, she said, “They’re all nuts, and that’s a joy…it makes me deliriously happy.”
Leslie Caron—Emmy's Most Promising Newscomer
in 1951—Picks Up Another in 2007 for Wrenching
Law & Order Guest Role
Another legendary performer, Leslie Caron, was honored for her wrenching Law & Order: Special Victims Unit performance as rape victim Lorraine Delmas.
Although well known for her work in such feature films as An American in Paris, Lili, Gigi, Daddy Long Legs, Fanny and The L-Shaped Room, the seventy-six-year-old Caron has a lengthy television resume as well. Among those credits are acclaimed miniseries QB-VII and episodes of such series as The Love Boat and Falcon Crest.
“I think I was nominated in 1951 for most promising newcomer,” said Caron, who was dressed in a green floral-print dress of her own design, and her hair adorned with three flowers—one red and two green, matching her outfit. “I’m glad I finally realized my potential.”
Caron said she has been a fan of the original Law & Order for years, so when Law & Order: Special Victims Unit producer Neal Baer sent her a script via email, she was eager to participate. She also praised the show for tackling the difficult subject matter of violence against women, “a subject most of us feel very strongly about.”
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit executive producer Dick Wolf, commenting on Caron’s award, said, “It is incredibly gratifying to have one of the icons of the last fifty years of film to win for her return to American television.”
Controversy, Irreverence Mark Reality and
Original Music Award Segments
At the other end of the spectrum, comedian-actress Kathy Griffin, true to her brazen brand of humor, accepted her award for Outstanding Reality Series by saying, “I guess hell just froze over—can you believe this s---?” She ended with an intentionally outrageous rebuke to award recipients who thank Jesus Christ in their speeches.
An irreverent tone also prevailed with the award for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics, which went to the team from Saturday Night Live for the song “Dick in a Box,” which was performed on the nominated episode by its host, pop star Justin Timberlake, and SNL cast member Andy Samberg.
Although Timberlake was not present to receive his award, Samberg was, as well as the other collaborators, Jorma Taccone, Asa Taccone, Katreese Barnes and Akiva Schaffer. Samberg, who spoke for the winners from the stage, joked, “I think it’s safe to say that when we first set out to write this song, we were thinking, ‘Emmy!’”
Disney Head Iger Presents Cassyd Honor to
Colleauge and Close Friend Rich Frank
The two Governors Awards were presented by the Television Academy’s chairman and chief executive officer, Dick Askin.
“Idol Gives Back” was a star-studded gala and public service campaign that helped raise more than $75 million to benefit relief programs for children and young people in extreme poverty in America and Africa.
An extension of HBO’s acclaimed fourteen-part documentary series Addiction, “The Addiction Project” was an unprecedented multi-platform and outreach campaign with events in over 100 cities aimed at helping Americans understand addiction as a chronic but treatable brain disease.
Richard Frank’s Syd Cassyd Founders Award was presented by the chairman and CEO of the Walt Disney Company, Robert A. Iger, a close friend of Frank. Only eight others have received the award, which is named for its first recipient, Syd Cassyd, who founded the Television Academy in 1946.
The Cassyd honor was created to recognize members who have made a significant positive impact on the Academy through their efforts and service over many years of involvement.
“As a kid, I would sit in front of the television, about twelve inches away from the screen, eating potato chips and drinking soda,” said Frank. He recalled that his mother would say to him, “‘Nobody is going to pay you to watch television.’ Little did she know.”
He went on to thank members of his family, numerous friends and colleagues, and summed up by saying, “Thank you for honoring me for doing something I love so much.”
During his presidency of the Academy, Frank oversaw numerous initiatives that elevated the Academy’s profile within the industry beyond the Emmy Awards.
Among those accomplishments are the “Information Superhighway Summit,” a daylong conference held at Royce Hall on the UCLA campus. The conference drew many of the most influential executives in the media world to hear keynote speaker Vice President Al Gore discuss the expanding 500-television-channel universe and new technologies such as the internet.
Frank also spearheaded an ambitious anti-drug campaign and presided over the creation of the Television Academy Foundation’s Archive of American Television.
The Television Archive is an indispensable historical resource that has taped unedited video interviews with more than 500 actors, writers, producers and other television pioneers and legends. Many of these in-depth conversations range from three to seven hours, offering unprecendented access and insight to these vital entertainment and media figures.
Creative Arts Emmy Awards Tally by Network
Rounding out the night’s winners after HBO and NBC were CBS with nine awards; Cartoon Network with eight; Fox with seven; PBS with six; ABC, Discovery Channel and Showtime with four; Bravo, Nickelodeon and TNT with two; and abcfamily.com, AMC, Comedy Central, Sci Fi Channel, Starz Kids and Family and USA with one each.
Executive producers of the show were John Moffitt and Lee Miller, and producer, for the thirteenth time, was Spike Jones, Jr.
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About The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences
The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences was founded in 1946 just one month after network television was born. It is a non-profit organization devoted to the advancement of telecommunications arts and sciences and to fostering creative leadership in the telecommunications industry. In addition to recognizing outstanding programming through its Emmy® Award, the Television Academy publishes Emmy® Magazine and stages many industry-related programs, services and year-round events for the television community.
For additional press information and resources concerning the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, please direct your inquiries to Robin Mesger of The Lippin Group at (323) 965-1990.
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