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Emmys history: Few black nominees, even fewer black winners

It's 2015 and for the first time the Emmys nominated two black women for lead actress in a drama. Although it may provide some relief to the #EmmysSoWhite camp, long-tail data show that black actors and actresses (perhaps unsurprisingly) have a long way to go.

Since 1966*, only 48 out of 1,001 nominees for lead actor and actress in a drama or comedy were black. Four black actors have won an Emmy as a lead actor in a comedy or drama. Isabel Sanford is the only black woman to win as lead actress in a comedy for "The Jeffersons." No black actress has won for dramatic lead.

Nominees and winners in drama or comedy

Black Emmy winners

Other nominees

and winners

1966*

Bill Cosby wins lead

actor in a drama. First

for a black person.

 

1970

Black nominees

1975

Isabel Sanford is the first

black woman to win lead

actress in a comedy.

1980

Robert Guillaume is the first

black man nominated for

lead actor in a comedy.

James Earl Jones wins

lead actor in a drama

for “Gabriel’s Fire.”

Andre Braugher wins lead

actor in a drama for “Homi

cide: Life on the Street.”

2000

2005

2010

For the first time, two black

women are nominees for lead

actress in a drama.

2015

*The Emmy ceremonies began in 1949 but did not have

genre-specific acting categories before 1966

Nominees and winners in drama or comedy

Black Emmy winners

Other nominees

and winners

1966*

Bill Cosby wins lead actor in a drama.

His 1966 nom. is the first for a black person.

 

 

Black nominees

1970

1975

1980

Isabel Sanford is the first black woman

to win lead actress in a comedy.

Robert Guillaume is the first black

man nominated for lead actor in a comedy.

James Earl Jones wins lead actor

in a drama for “Gabriel’s Fire.”

Andre Braugher wins lead actor in a

drama for “Homicide: Life on the Street.”

2000

2005

2010

2015

For the first time, two black women

are nominees for lead actress in a drama.

*The Emmy ceremonies began in 1949 but did not have

genre-specific acting categories before 1966

Nominees and winners in drama or comedy

Black Emmy winners

Other nominees

and winners

1966*

Bill Cosby wins lead actor in a drama

for three consecutive years for “I Spy.” His 1966

nomination is the first for a black person.

 

 

1970

Black nominees

1975

1980

Isabel Sanford is the first black woman

to win lead actress in a comedy.

Robert Guillaume is the first black

man nominated for lead actor in a comedy.

James Earl Jones wins lead actor

in a drama for “Gabriel’s Fire.”

Andre Braugher wins lead actor in a

drama for “Homicide: Life on the Street.”

2000

2005

2010

2015

For the first time, two black women (Viola Davis and Taraji P.

Henson) are nominees for lead actress in a drama.

*The Emmy ceremonies began in 1949 but did not have genre-specific acting categories before 1966

Nominees and winners in drama or comedy

Black Emmy winners

Other nominees

and winners

1966*

Bill Cosby wins lead actor in a drama

for three consecutive years for “I Spy.” His 1966

nomination is the first for a black person.

 

 

1970

Black nominees

1975

1980

Isabel Sanford is the first black woman

to win lead actress in a comedy.

Robert Guillaume is the first black

man nominated for lead actor in a comedy.

James Earl Jones wins lead actor

in a drama for “Gabriel’s Fire.”

Andre Braugher wins lead actor in a

drama for “Homicide: Life on the Street.”

2000

2005

2010

2015

For the first time, two black women (Viola Davis and Taraji P.

Henson) are nominees for lead actress in a drama.

*The Emmy ceremonies began in 1949 but did not have genre-specific acting categories before 1966

Nominees and winners in drama or comedy

Black Emmy winners

Other nominees

and winners

1966*

Bill Cosby wins lead actor in a drama

for three consecutive years for “I Spy.” His 1966

nomination is the first for a black person.

 

Black nominees

1970

1975

1980

Isabel Sanford is the first black woman

to win lead actress in a comedy.

Robert Guillaume is the first black

man nominated for lead actor in a comedy.

James Earl Jones wins lead actor

in a drama for “Gabriel’s Fire.”

Andre Braugher wins lead actor in a

drama for “Homicide: Life on the Street.”

2000

2005

2010

2015

For the first time, two black women (Viola Davis and Taraji P.

Henson) are nominees for lead actress in a drama.

*The Emmy ceremonies began in 1949 but did not have genre-specific acting categories before 1966

Sources: Emmys.com, Times reporting

Kyle Kim @latimesgraphics


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