From left: Emmy nominees Jonathan Groff, Mj Rodriguez, and Bowen Yang
All year, TV lovers look forward to seeing their favorite series and celebs get the recognition they deserve at the Emmys, and in 2021 it’s queer excellence as far as the eye can see.
This year’s nominations for the Primetime Emmy Awards were announced Tuesday during a live event streamed on the Television Academy’s website, and as the names rolled out, queer history was in the making.
Both Mj Rodriguez, who made history as the first transgender lead ever nominated, and Billy Porter scored nods for their roles in Pose. The series itself also made the list for Outstanding Drama Series.
GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis released a statment celebrating this landmark moment. “Rodriguez’s Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series is a breakthrough for transgender women in Hollywood, and a long-overdue recognition for her groundbreaking performance over the past three seasons of Pose,” Ellis said. “Additionally, the show’s nomination for Outstanding Drama Series, as well as Billy Porter’s third nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, mark a historic show that undoubtedly raised the bar for trans representation on television and changed the way viewers around the world understand the trans community.”
Also making history is Bowen Yang, whose nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series for his role on Saturday Night Live is the first time a “featured” player has earned the nod in the show’s 46-year history. Also earning a nomination for his time on SNL is Dan Levy, who scored the nomination for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series and Kate McKinnon, who earned the nod for Supporting Actress. SNL will have some competition taking home the Emmy against the out actors Hannah Einbinder and Carl Clemons-Hopkins, who have been nominated for their roles in Hacks.
The Crown was another standout, with nominations for queer nonbinary actor Emma Corrin for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series and bisexual icon Gillian Anderson for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series. Anderson will compete with out actor Samira Wiley, who is nominated for her role in The Handmaid’s Tale.
Jonathan Groff may sing his way to an Emmy, as he was nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie for his role as King George in Hamilton. Cynthia Erivo, who is also well-known for her incredible pipes, has been nominated for Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie for her turn in Genius: Aretha.
On the reality TV front, RuPaul received his sixth Emmy nomination in a row for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program for RuPaul’s Drag Race. Bobby Berk, Karamo Brown, Tan France, Antoni Porowski, and Jonathan Van Ness were all nominated as the hosts of Queer Eye, which also got the nod for Outstanding Structured Reality Program. Capping things off, RuPaul’s Drag Race Untucked has been nominated for best Unstructured Reality Program.
The awards will be presented September 19 in a show airing on CBS.