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Here are Emmy's top 11 semifinalists for best supporting drama actress

July 1, 2008 |  7:26 am

Yep, again there are 11 entries instead of 10 — just like in the race for best supporting drama actor. (CLICK HERE) We must assume that the popular vote was so close between the 10th and 11th vote-getters that the accountants OKd them both to be considered as one of the five nominees to be unveiled on July 17.

Out of Emmy bounds: Connie Britton ("Friday Night Lights"), who dropped down to the supporting race after making the top 10 runoff for best lead drama actress last year. This doesn't mean that the low-rated critical hit has fallen out of favor with Emmy voters — "Friday Night Lights" made the top 10 runoff for best drama series. It's an obvious anti-Connie thing.

Another surprising omission: January Jones, who portrays Jon Hamm's emotionally plagued wife on "Mad Men." Her role is so prominent that many Emmy observers were surprised she opted to compete in the supporting race, not lead like costar Elizabeth Moss. Instead, voters (academy membership is overwhelmingly male) chose to snuggle up to costar Christina Hendricks, who portrays the — ahem — sexually frisky office manager. 

Also missing in Emmy action: Lisa Edelstein ("House") and Patricia Wettig ("Brothers and Sisters"). Plus several more "Grey's Anatomy" gals were eligible, but aren't here: Chyler Leigh, Sara Ramirez, Brooke Smith. Four "Lost" stars are lost: Yunjin Kim, Rebecca Mader, Elizabeth Mitchell and Emelie de Ravin.

Note that Candice Bergen — who made this list — is back in Emmy competition. Last year she took her name out of this race, just as she had bowed out of the battle for best lead comedy actress during the waning days of "Murphy Brown" after winning five times. However, Bergen did submit her name for consideration in this supporting-drama lineup two years ago when she reaped her last Emmy nomination for "Boston Legal."

Cited with each name on this list is the title of the episode entered to Emmy judges as a sample of their best work from the past TV season. Judges will rank their choices 11 (best score) to 1, then accountants will combine those numbers with results of the original popular vote on a 50/50 basis to determine the final five nominees.

Jane Alexander, "Tell Me You Love Me" (Episode 10)
Candice Bergen, "Boston Legal" ("The Mighty Rogues")
Rose Byrne, "Damages" ("Because I Know Patty")
Jill Clayburgh, "Dirty Sexy Money" ("The Watch")
Sharon Gless, "Burn Notice" ("Identity")
Rachel Griffiths, "Brothers and Sisters" ("Domestic Issues")
Christina Hendricks, "Mad Men" ("Babylon")
S. Epatha Merkerson, "Law and Order" ("Bottomless")
Sandra Oh, "Grey's Anatomy" ("The Becoming")
Dianne Wiest, "In Treatment" ("Paul and Gina: Week ?")
Chandra Wilson, "Grey's Anatomy" ("Lay Your Hands on Me")


Photos: AMC, NBC