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Playing favorites is the name of the awards season game, so at Entertainment Weekly‘s annual pre-Emmy soiree — held at West Hollywood hot spot Fig & Olive on Sept. 18 and presented by L’Oreal Paris and Hearts on Fire — THR asked a roster of small screen stars to pick their nominated favorites heading into Sunday’s telecast.
And that’s not always an easy answer to get on a red carpet. However, we did get Trevor Noah of The Daily Show to admit it’s a “problem” because some nominees are colleagues and friends. Noah had an easier time mingling at the bash filled with TV stars including Jill Soloway, Jane Krakowski, Kat Graham, NeNe Leakes, Niecy Nash, Bellamy Young, Kiernan Shipka, Paul Dano, Sarah Paulson, Tony Hale, Zoe Kazan, Anna Chlumsky, Laverne Cox, Angie Harmon, Ariel Winter, Laura Prepon, Elaine Hendrix and Uzo Aduba.
See what the stars had to say about their favorite picks below:
Trevor Noah: “Now that’s a problem because I have too many friends competing and favorites of mine. I know I want Jon Hamm to win, and then there is The Daily Show, which I’m rooting for. But I love John Oliver’s show as well and he’s part of The Daily Show alumni. And there is Amy Schumer and Key & Peele so I’m torn on all sides.”
Derek Hough: “I hope our show wins. I feel like our show has gotten better and better. I don’t know who is exactly nominated in all of the categories. Game of Thrones of course, who doesn’t love them and want them to win.”
Life in Pieces, New Girl actress Zoe Lister Jones (in Sandro): I love Transparent. I think Gaby Hoffmann is amazing and I think it’s really cool that she’s nominated twice. Niecy Nash is amazing, she’s incredible on Getting On. And I’m sure Andy Samberg will be a very good entertaining, charismatic host. I’ll be in my house, on my couch with my husband having a glass of champagne, like I end most nights.
Empire actor Rafael de la Fuente: “I’m a huge, huge, huge Game of Thrones fan so I hope they win. But of course I’m rooting for my fellow castmate Taraji (P. Henson). I think she should win and will win. If she does win, the party in Chicago will be naughty. It would be a great party, and we would all be so happy for her. She’s an amazing human being. An amazing artist. She truly, truly deserves this award.”
Modern Family star Rico Rodriguez: “I really love Tituss Burgess from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. I know he’s nominated against one of my co-stars so if Ty Burrell doesn’t win, I want Tituss to win because he’s so funny on the show. I hope everybody wins. I’m happy for everybody.”
Wendie Malick: “Veep is brilliant. There are so many great shows that I think pretty much everyone who is nominated is so deserving. I’m always rooting for the character actresses who are really unusual. There’s such a bevy of fabulous stuff. It’s hard now because the lines are blurred between comedy and drama, not that there hasn’t always been, but with single camera shows on cable being up against traditional sitcoms, it’s a huge cluster blank. That said, I do think Jon Hamm is extraordinary and I would be very happy for him if he won. The guy is so young, I’m sure he has a giant career ahead of him but when you’ve done something as groundbreaking as that character, Don Draper, that was a game changer.”
Scandal actor Joe Morton: “My out on that is everybody and I’m not going to play any favorites.”
Modern Family actor Nolan Gould: “This Emmy weekend is exciting because if we win we beat the record, and that’s something we really would love. We are really pulling for that. I’m a huge Game of Thrones fan, and I think the cast of that show is really amazing. So I’m pulling for them for drama series.”
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