Emmys: Will Tina Fey and Amy Poehler Make History by Sharing a Guest Acting Nom? (Analysis)

The duo, who have shared Emmy noms in two other categories, could be recognized together for their work co-hosting the Dec. 19 episode of 'SNL.'
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Tina Fey (left) and Amy Poehler host 'SNL'

Not many 41-year-old shows are still accomplishing new feats — in part because only a handful of shows in TV history have ever survived for that many years — but that's precisely what Saturday Night Live is poised to do when this year's Emmy nominations are announced on July 14.

How? Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, former SNL regulars and longtime favorites of the TV Academy, might well become the first people to share a guest acting nomination — in this case, a nomination for outstanding guest actress in a comedy series — for their work co-hosting SNL's Dec. 19 episode. (You may recall their sketches about the GOP presidential debate, an imagined meeting between Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin and a music video.)

Guest acting awards have existed since the early '80s. Initially, there were just two, which blended performers of different genders but not genres — outstanding guest performer in a drama and outstanding guest performer in a comedy — before those two were, in turn, divided by gender starting in 1986.

Co-hosting was fairly common at SNL in the '70s, '80s and '90s (it happened 15 times during those decades), but there were only two examples of it in the 2000s prior to Fey and Poehler's episode — Jessica Simpson with Nick Lachey and Mary-Kate Olsen with Ashley Olsen, both in 2004 — and none resulted in a shared Emmy nomination.

This year, though, the TV Academy accepted SNL's joint submission for Fey and Poehler, meaning their names are listed together as a single entry on the e-ballot that the performers peer group is currently considering. (It's unclear how the TV Academy would handle the submission of an episode hosted by a man and a woman.)

In light of the fact that Fey has received Emmy nominations for all four prior occasions on which she's hosted SNL (three times in this same category and once in the no-longer-extant outstanding variety individual performance category) and that Fey and Poehler have shared noms in two other categories (their co-hosting and co-writing of the Golden Globe Awards was recognized with mentions for outstanding special class program and outstanding writing for a variety special, respectively, from 2013-2015), history might well be in the offing this year.

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