LOS ANGELES -- "Glee," the spunky TV musical comedy about high school misfits and the teachers who shepherd them, was a top Emmy nominee Thursday with 19 bids, including for best comedy series and stars Matthew Morrison and Lea Michele.
"I'm in such shock," Michele said from New York.
The leading nominee was the gritty, unsparing World War IIdrama, "The Pacific," with 24 nominations. But the miniseries,produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks as a companion to theiracclaimed "Band of Brothers," failed to produce the same buzz asits European theater of war predecessor.
Conan O'Brien is gone from NBC's "The Tonight Show" but hisshort tenure as host is not forgotten: The late-night show with himat the helm nabbed a nomination as best variety, music or comedyseries, while resurrected Jay Leno was snubbed in the category.
Don Mischer, executive producer of the Emmy Awards telecast thatwill air on NBC, said he wasn't surprised by O'Brien's nomination.The comedian exited "Tonight" after rejecting the network'sattempt to push him and the show to a post-midnight slot to makeroom for Leno's return to late-night.
"Everybody understands what happened," Mischer said. "And itwas an opportunity for Emmy voters to like give him some support,you know. And he deserved it."
David Letterman's "Late Show" also was missing from thenominees, after a season in which the host turned an admission ofaffairs with female staffers and a blackmail attempt into highbroadcast drama.
Out of the running for best comedy series is "Two and HalfMen" as well as its star, Charlie Sheen, who's been charged in adomestic dispute case involving his wife. The show and Sheen haveroutinely been nominated in past seasons.
Besides "Glee," other newcomers receiving Emmy recognitioninclude "Modern Family," with nods for best comedy series and forfive members of its ensemble cast - although not linchpin EdO'Neill as the patriarch - and "The Good Wife," a nominee forbest drama and recognition for star Julianna Margulies.
Top categories were announced on an early Thursday telecast bySofia Vergara of "Modern Family," who was nominated, and JoelMcHale of "Community," who wasn't.
"That's all right. I phoned it in," McHale responded when TVacademy Chairman and CEO John Shaffner offered his condolences.
Vergara was stunned by her nomination.
"With this accent, it's very hard to find roles. To have beenable to find a role so perfect for a person like me with myethnicity, with the way I look, it's unbelievable," she said.
The final season of "Lost" garnered nominations for best dramaseries and a nod for star Matthew Fox and supporting nominationsfor Terry O'Quinn and Michael Emerson. Elizabeth Mitchell receiveda guest actress bid for the drama.
The most-nominated reality series were "Dancing with theStars" with nine bids, "The Amazing Race" with seven and"American Idol" with six.
Jane Lynch was a double-barreled threat, with a supportingcomedy actress bid for her sadistic cheerleading coach in "Glee"and a nod as guest actress for "Two and a Half Men." She plays atherapist for Sheen's character.
"Saturday Night Live" received 12 nominations for a total 126nominations during its run, surpassing the "ER" all-time recordof 124 bids. One of the nominations went to Betty White, who at 88proved you're never too old for comedy when she hosted the show tobig ratings and applause.
White's competitors include Tina Fey, the former "SaturdayNight Live" writer and star who took a break from her "30 Rock,"the second-most nominated comedy with 15 bids, to return as an"SNL" host.
Fey made light Thursday of her best comedy actress nominationfor "30 Rock."
"This is great and exciting news. Also, this seems like anappropriate time for me to announce to NBC that I will not berenewing my contract - with my gym," Fey said in a statement. Ofthe show's best comedy series bid, she added, "We're grateful andexcited. Especially since today is the fifth anniversary of the dayNBC forgot to cancel us."
White also contributed to yet another nomination, the Snickerscandy bar Super Bowl spot that received a nod for best commercial.
"Mad Men" was the most-nominated drama with 17 bids. Thedarkly sexy 1960s period show has been honored as best drama twoyears in a row. Its stars, Jon Hamm and January Jones, receivedacting bids.
Besides "Glee" and "Modern Family," other nominees for bestcomedy series include "Curb Your Enthusiasm," "Nurse Jackie,""The Office" and last year's winner, "30 Rock." The comedy haswon three times in a row. Joining "Mad Men," "Lost" and "The Good Wife" as bestdrama series nominees were "Breaking Bad," "Dexter" andfirst-timer "True Blood," which overcame TV academy voterreservations about fantasy genre shows.
Only one other miniseries nominee, "Return to Cranford," iscompeting with "The Pacific."
Big names prevailed in the made-for-TV movie category. AlPacino's performance as euthanasia advocate Dr. Jack Kevorkian in"You Don't Know Jack" and the film itself were nominated, whilethis year's Oscar winner Jeff Bridges was nominated for "A DogYear."
The most-nominated movie was "Temple Grandin," based on thelife of the animal science expert, with 15 bids, including one forstar Claire Danes.
"I hadn't done anything in television since `My So-CalledLife,"' Danes said. "Both projects are so extraordinary and sinceI was last nominated - since I was a kid - television has becomeincredibly sophisticated and a wonderfully fertile ground foractors because there's just incredible characters available intelevision shows now and TV movies."
Other film actors in the TV movie honors hunt are Dennis Quaidand Hope Davis for their portrayals of Bill and Hillary Clinton in"The Special Relationship," along with co-star Michael Sheen asBritish politician Tony Blair.
Bryan Cranston, last year's best drama actor winner for"Breaking Bad," was nominated again. He's joined by Hamm, Fox,Michael C. Hall of "Dexter," Kyle Chandler of "Friday NightLights" and Hugh Laurie of "House."
"It's a double celebration," said Cranston. "It's my 21stanniversary today. However, when I turned to my wife and said, 'Isbeing nominated enough of an anniversary present for you?' And shesaid, 'No.' I went, 'OK. I'll be right back.' We will have a doublecelebration tonight at dinner, yes we will."
Glenn Close, who captured top drama acting honors last year for"Damages" received a bid, along with Jones, Margulies, KyraSedgwick of "The Closer," Connie Britton of "Friday NightLights," Mariska Hargitay of "Law & Order: Special VictimsUnit."
Besides Michele of "Glee" and Fey of "30 Rock," bids forlead actress in a comedy went to Julia Louis-Dreyfus for thecanceled "The New Adventure of Old Christine," Edie Falco for"Nurse Jackie," Amy Poehler for "Parks and Recreation" and lastyear's winner, Toni Collette, for "The United States of Tara."
Among comedy series actors, the nominees are Jim Parsons of"The Big Bang Theory," Larry David for "Curb Your Enthusiasm,"Tony Shalhoub for the last season of "Monk," Steve Carell for"The Office" and Alec Baldwin for "30 Rock." Baldwin is atwo-time winner for the series.
HBO received the most nominations overall, with 101 bids,followed by ABC with 63 and CBS with 57. NBC earned 48, Foxreceived 47 and PBS had 32. Showtime had 23 nods.
The Emmy Awards will air Aug. 29 on NBC, with Jimmy Fallonhosting. The ceremony, which usually airs in September, was movedup to avoid a conflict with NBC's Sunday NFL broadcasts.
On the Net:
Emmys: www.emmys.orgCopyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times