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The Hollywood Reporter

The Hollywood Reporter Emmy Special Issue 26B August 2019

The all-new Hollywood Reporter offers unprecedented access to the people, studios, networks and agencies that create the magic in Hollywood. Published weekly, the oversized format includes exceptional photography and rich features.

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4 Min.
what’s so funny about dying?

In challenging social times, entertainment can either veer into bubbly escapism or take a darker turn. Four of this year’s nominees for comedy series go as dark as you can, staring death in the face. HBO’s Barry and Amazon’s Fleabag, both brilliant and innovative, have main characters driven by grief and guilty consciences, leading to lives that are comically absurd. Netflix’s Russian Doll and NBC’s The Good Place confront the specter of death by positing an afterlife, creating laughable loops of time in which their characters learn to become better people. These shows are not based on simple gallows humor — rather, death is woven into the fabric of the characters and gives meaning to their ludicrous lives. Barry and Fleabag, series shaped by the distinct voices of their stars, became…

5 Min.
veterans battle breakouts

LEAD ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES Anthony Anderson BLACK-ISH (ABC) This likable character actor has now been nominated for all five seasons of Kenya Barris’ show — the only traditional sitcom and one of only two network series represented in this category — on which he plays Dre, an ad exec with a wild and crazy family. The show’s ratings have plummeted, it boasts only one other nomination this year (for costumes), and it would be unusual for an actor to win for the first time this far into a show’s run. Don Cheadle BLACK MONDAY (Showtime) After five seasons on Showtime’s House of Lies, four of which brought him a nom, this veteran returned to the network — and is nominated again for his work on its rookie show about a bumbling Wall Street firm in…

6 Min.
better call saul

The fourth season of AMC’s Better Call Saul was pivotal for this Breaking Bad prequel, as Bob Odenkirk’s Jimmy McGill was forced to sever emotional ties with his late brother, Chuck (Michael McKean), as he moved several steps closer to fully becoming Saul Goodman. Series showrunner Peter Gould, who created Better Call Saul with Vince Gilligan, spoke with THR about the key season of the drama, the gratification of seeing veteran McKean finally getting the first Emmy nomination of his storied career (as Odenkirk notched his fourth lead actor nom for his role) and the frustration of co-star Rhea Seehorn’s ongoing Emmy shutout. What’s it going to take to get Rhea Seehorn a nomination? Any nomination is a wonderful gift, and I am thrilled that in a universe with so many TV…

6 Min.

Bodyguard, Jed Mercurio’s six-episode series about a military veteran (Richard Madden) suffering from PTSD who is hired to protect a controversial politician (Keeley Hawes), blossomed from a British hit to a worldwide sensation after it debuted Oct. 24 on Netflix. The thriller has landed BBC its first nomination in the drama series category in nearly 50 years. Mercurio, 52, spoke with THR about why he thinks the show has become such a phenomenon, what he learned about bomb disposal and who from his cast would make the best reallife politician. What was unique about the way Bodyguard took TV by storm? It was an amazing kind of roller-coaster ride because the show had done extremely well in the U.K. But I think it maybe had something to do with the fact that…

5 Min.
game of thrones

Seventy episodes of television built up to this: the White Walkers unleashing the full force of their undead terror on Westeros in “The Long Night,” the climactic battle episode at the heart of Game of Thrones’ final season. The result of the showdown: a handful of main character deaths and a much bigger surprise in the form of the White Walkers’ crushing defeat, thanks to Arya Stark’s unexpected killing of the Night King. Behind it all: Miguel Sapochnik, the veteran Game of Thrones director responsible for so many of the HBO epic’s biggest moments, such as the ambitious “Hardhome” and “Battle of the Bastards” episodes. He was charged with presiding over a very different kind of war in “The Long Night,” without his typical action hero Kit Harington to lean on and…

7 Min.
killing eve

Emerald Fennell says she could talk about Killing Eve “forever — my husband says I could talk a person to death.” Fennell knows a thing or two about death, as the showrunner of the second season of BBC America’s breakout drama. The season saw Eve (Sandra Oh) trying to avoid her own demise but also grappling with her darker side and her feelings for her friend/foe/flame Villanelle (Jodie Comer). Fennell, who took over the showrunner job from Phoebe Waller-Bridge, spoke to THR about the show’s 11 Emmy nominations, why Eve and Villanelle have a unique connection and where the show may go in season three. Phoebe Waller-Bridge had a golden rule that Villanelle would never use her beauty to get what she wanted. Are there other golden rules? In general it’s “be honest,” which…