Emmys 2014: Anna Chlumsky says 'Veep' character 'got what she wants'

Emmys 2014: Anna Chlumsky says 'Veep' character 'got what she wants'
Anna Chlumsky stars in HBO's "Veep." (Bill Gray / HBO)

Anna Chlumsky was a bit distracted the morning we caught up with her. There's the play she's in, "Living on Love" starring Renée Fleming, at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in the Berkshires; there's her 1-year-old, Penelope, who was napping; and there was an early morning, ringing telephone signaling her Emmy nomination for supporting actress in HBO's "Veep."

Were you at all surprised by your nomination?
"I wasn't expecting to be nominated. I was certainly hoping for it. It's like when a band has an album out -- and they want the next one to be a hit -- I was worried about a sophomore slump. I had finally gotten to the place where I wasn't thinking about it. And so this week I really didn't pay attention to it much. I had come to peace about either outcome. Also, this morning I didn't even realize the announcement was coming out -- I thought it was next week! So, yeah, it was a surprise -- and it makes you that much more grateful.

So how did you find out?
It's just me and Penny here; and I had gotten up with her, and we fixed her breakfast and I was playing with her -- we were having a little dance party. She went down for her nap and I got a phone call from my publicist. She was like: 'Congrats.' I was like: 'For what?'  It was delayed gratification … because then I checked my phone and got all these emails!


This is your second nod from the Television Academy. Is your character – are you – on a roll? 

It seems to me, now, that there's the burgeoning pattern that people do seem to notice Amy and appreciate her character in the wider fabric of our show. I think, from what I've heard from people, there is  a sense that they identify with her because she's actually the one trying hard -- she's the workhorse, she eats hummus from a pen cap!

What direction might the writers push her in from here?
She's a campaign manager of this really high-profile crazy campaign now, so something I'm preparing for is just how different her job is now that she's running the campaign. We don't know where the writers are taking the show, but going into the first rehearsal this fall -- the difference between being chief of staff and now running a campaign -- this is her dream, she's always wanted to run a winning campaign. So that's in the back of my head -- full blazes, she got what she wants, it's on for her.

What was your take on the nominations in general?
I'm thrilled to bits that so many of those fantastic actors from "The Normal Heart" were recognized. Matty Bomer is a friend and I'm so happy for him and Jim Parsons' performance was so beautiful. Also, Lena Headey, who I've never met but admired for her performance on "Game of Thrones" -- I'm so happy about that.

Any snubs, in your opinion?

I actually think that this year, with these nominations, they got a lot right. There's a new show on called "Turn" on AMC….  Kevin McNally, he should have been recognized. And of course I want every single actor in my show to be nominated.

The 66th Primetime Emmy Awards will be broadcast live on NBC on Aug. 25. The ceremonies, which are being held at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, will be hosted by Seth Meyers. 

Twitter: @debvankin