Some people arrive fashionably late to post-Emmy parties. And then there's Vince Gilligan.
It was way past 11 p.m., three hours after the final moments of the Emmy Awards, when Gilligan, the creator of AMC's Emmy-winning drama "Breaking Bad," finally strolled into the post-Emmy celebration hosted by AMC and sister network IFC at Boa Steakhouse.
But the throng in the packed restaurant didn't seem to mind -- the gracious and genial producer and writer was given a hero's welcome when he arrived for the victory party.
The victory of "Breaking Bad," which scored its second consecutive Emmy for drama series in its highly acclaimed final season, made Gilligan the biggest winner of the night.
After he won, Gilligan visited the press room and also attended the Governors' Ball, where he celebrated with other "Breaking Bad" winners, including lead drama actress Anna Gunn, lead drama actor Bryan Cranston and supporting actor Aaron Paul.
Despite the continuous hoopla that has surrounded the Sony Pictures Television series about high school chemistry teacher Walter White and his transformation into a deadly drug kingpin, Gilligan was not sure that "Breaking Bad" would emerge into the winners' circle.
"I was nervous -- this was unexpected," said Gilligan when he was finally able to maneuver to a table near the rear of the restaurant's patio. Clutching his golden Emmy, he still seemed a bit dazed by the evening's festivities.
It had been a tense evening, but he said he relaxed a lot more after Cranston won the lead actor in a drama award. He was more than aware that Matthew McConaughey of HBO's "True Detective" was a heavy favorite in the highly competitive category.
"When Bryan won, I knew we had a real chance," he said.
As the party wore on, so many well-wishers approached Gilligan that he was barely able to eat a few bites of a late supper. But his smile never faded as he continued to accept congratulations.
Near his table, several other members of the "Breaking Bad" company, including Cranston and Gunn, were jubilant as they toasted each other.
Said Gilligan, "This has truly been so great. I'm so happy for everyone."