September 22, 2013 8:52pm PT by Marisa Guthrie
Emmys: After 14 Nominations, Netflix Earns One Primetime Prize
In the end, Netflix made history. Just not very much of it.
Netflix went into the 65th Primetime Emmy Awards with 14 nominations, including best drama series for the political thriller House of Cards and nods to its stars Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright. While David Fincher earned an Emmy for directing the first chapter of House of Cards and the streaming service picked up a handful of Emmys at the Creative Arts gala Sept. 15, it was all but shut out of the major awards Sunday night.
Earlier in the night on the red carpet, Spacey noted that the streaming service's inclusion in TV's biggest night "represents a new paradigm for the industry."
"It shows that the Academy has a modern, progressive streak," Spacey said. "More companies are going to step forward to do this kind of thing, so more shows will be produced, more actors will be hired, more work done."
Spacey and Wright were nominated for best actor and actress in a drama. But Jeff Daniels was the surprise winner for his turn as a pedantic cable news anchor in the first season of Aaron Sorkin's HBO drama The Newsroom. Claire Danes picked up her second consecutive Emmy for Showtime's Homeland. Jason Bateman was nominated for lead actor in a comedy for the Netflix revival of Arrested Development. But The Big Bang Theory's Jim Parsons again walked off with the statue. Fincher -- who was not in attendance at the Nokia Theatre -- beat out directors on several awards favorites, including Boardwalk Empire, Breaking Bad and Homeland.
House of Cards was also awarded Emmys for drama series casting (beating out Downton Abbey, Game of Thrones, Homeland and The Good Wife) and cinematography for a single-camera drama series, where its competition was Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones and Mad Men.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter in the hours after Netflix earned its 14 nominations, chief content officer Ted Sarandos lauded Emmy voters for "eliminating the line between Internet and television and saying that television is about what’s on the screen, not what size the screen is or how the content got there."
This certainly will not be the last Emmy showing for Netflix; House of Cards is in production on season two, and the streaming service has made original programming a high priority. A lengthy ad for the company's originals -- which also include Orange Is the New Black -- aired during the Emmys.
But on a night of surprises -- Boardwalk Empire's Bobby Cannavale beating Homeland's Mandy Patinkin and Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul for supporting actor, Nurse Jackie's oft-nominated Merritt Wever finally getting a supporting actress Emmy, The Voice ending the Amazing Race streak, The Colbert Report ending Jon Stewart's streak -- even one major award is a good showing.
As Vince Gilligan noted when he accepted the outstanding drama series Emmy for AMC's Breaking Bad: "I did not see this coming. I thought it was going to be House of Cards."