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Bold 'Tudors' Emmy ploy: DVD inside Variety has final 4 eppys

May 30, 2007 | 10:52 am

Tudorscovervariety

Look at Jonathan Rhys Meyers puckering his lips on the cover of Tuesday's Variety! He can almost taste a top Emmy nom for his hit Showtime series.

Most Emmywatchers agree: "The Tudors" is thisclose to becoming the first non-HBO cable series to be nominated in the top series (drama or comedy) categories. Showtime doesn't want to take any chances. Yesterday — the third-to-last day of the Emmy eligibility period — the network not only bought the cover of Hollywood's top tradepaper, but it inserted something inside 30,000 copies that's never been tried: a DVD containing the last four episodes of the season.

That's curious, and quite bold, considering that the final two episodes aren't even Emmy eligible because they'll be telecast after the May 31 cut-off date. But that doesn't matter. Showtime wants to keep that "Tudors" buzz a-buzzing. Back in April the network shipped the first six episodes to Emmy voters, so now it wants to give them a jump on what's ahead while the show has obvious, breakout momentum.

Shrewdly, Showtime is using fresh new episodes of a series to tantalize voters just like HBO does. Don't you think it's rather, ahem, peculiar that both "The Sopranos" and "The Tudors" (two rich, white-trash families on either side of a throne — and the Atlantic Ocean — by the way — have you ever thought of that?) air new material after the Emmy period? What if their best stuff comes at the season finale? It won't be eligible for Emmy notice till next year by which time memory fades.

Well, frankly, that consideration is secondary to the chief goal of keeping TV voters interested in those series throughout the period when ballots will be cast to determine nominees: June 4 to 22.

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Comments

If they're considering anyone from The Tudors for the Emmy's they should take a look at Maria Doyle Kennedy who plays Queen Katherine. She's phenomenal!

I don't understand what the fuss about TUDORS is. Its kind of stilted and boring and lame. It would be a shame if it got a shot at the big prize and a full-blooded drama like ROME were left out, which I'm sure it will be. Sam Neill's performance is stellar though, I'd be very happy for him to win Best Featured Actor in a Drama, even if his competition were Michael Imperioli.

I've been frustrated by shows that air episodes after the Emmy deadline. Seasons ending after the elgibility period may be a big reason why Peter Krause, Brad Dourif, and more HBO stars don't have Emmys right now. Both actors gave big, flashy, Emmy-quality performances in season finale episodes. When the next year rolls around and the actor is eligible for work the next season, they invariably forget about that great finale episode to submit something from the present season, even if it's weaker.

Case in point: Julianna Margulies is eligible for guest actress for "The Sopranos." For consideration, she's submitting "Kennedy and Heidi," in which she has a brief cameo at a funeral, not a memorable performance by any means. But she's not submitting "Kaisha," the episode that aired in June in which she gives a flashy performance as her character experiences a downward spiral of drug use. No way does she have a chance with the episode she's submitting, but she'd have a fighting chance with "Kaisha."

I understand that every inch counts in the Emmy race. But for a show like "The Sopranos," which is all but guaranteed a drama series nod anyway, is it worth two more weeks of exposure to sacrifice being able to submit the series finale episode of one of TV's landmark dramas? Maybe they'll eke out one or two more nominations, but they might be sacrificing several wins if the finale episode lives up to its potential.


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