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SAG Awards: TV nominations favor cable dramas, network comedies

By Meredith Blake

Los Angeles Times

LAST UPDATED: 01:20 p.m. HST, Dec 12, 2012

NEW YORK » Cable dramas and network comedies dominated the nominees for the 19th-annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

In the drama category, cable favorites such as “Homeland,” “Mad Men,” “Breaking Bad” and “Boardwalk Empire” picked up multiple nominations, while network series were all but overlooked.

On the comedy side, the situation was reversed: Only one cable series, “Nurse Jackie,” made the cut in the ensemble category, with SAG favoring network sitcoms like “30 Rock,” “Modern Family” and “The Big Bang Theory.”

And naturally, there were some surprises and snubs.

In the drama category, SAG voters followed the trend firmly established at this year’s Emmys by failing to nominate the ensemble of any broadcast network series. Last year, “The Good Wife” was among the nominees, but this year only its lead actress, Julianna Margulies, made the cut. The crowded cable landscape also meant that the cast of HBO’s fantasy series “Game of Thrones” was overlooked, despite picking up a nomination in 2011.

After ignoring them last year, SAG voters nominated Damian Lewis and Claire Danes, the Emmy-winning leads of “Homeland,” along with the rest of the show’s ensemble.

Although the cast of “Mad Men” received a nod, as did its star, Jon Hamm, none of its female stars — Elisabeth Moss, Christina Hendricks, Jessica Pare or January Jones — was nominated. SAG voters also overlooked perennial nominees Kyra Sedgwick and Glenn Close, whose respective shows, “The Closer” and “Damages,” wrapped up this year.

Just as they did last year, SAG voters favored the ensembles of well-established sitcoms “Modern Family,” “The Big Bang Theory” and “30 Rock” in the comedy category, neglecting relative newcomers such as “New Girl” and cable favorites “Girls” and “Veep.”

The one notable exception was a nod for the cast of Showtime’s “Nurse Jackie”: Although series star Edie Falco has now been nominated for a SAG Award for four consecutive years, today marked a first for the rest of the ensemble.

The comedy actress category was mostly a repeat of last year, with the notable exception of “Modern Family” star Julie Bowen, who won her second Emmy in September. She was edged out of contention by Amy Poehler of “Parks and Recreation.” Despite winning an Emmy for her performance on “Veep,” Julia Louis-Dreyfus was also neglected by SAG voters.

Among actors, the biggest surprise may have been that Michael C. Hall was overlooked for his work on “Dexter,” while Jeff Daniels was honored for the critically scorned “The Newsroom.” Louis C.K. edged out this year’s Emmy winner, Jon Cryer of “Two and a Half Men,” on the comedy side.

There were few surprises in the TV movie or miniseries categories, with SAG voters largely siding with the Emmy choices by nominating the stars of HBO’s “Game Change” and “Hemingway & Gellhorn” and History’s “Hatfields & McCoys.”

The SAG Awards will be held Jan. 27, at the Los Angeles Shrine Exposition Center and broadcast on TNT and TBS.

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