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Easiest Emmy race to predict: best comedy actor

July 12, 2009 | 11:20 am

Our dueling Emmy experts and forum moderators — Chris "Boomer" Beachum and Robert "Rob L" Licuria (AwardsHeaven.net) — clash in most categories when predicting nominees, but they completely agree on who the six nominees will be in the race for best comedy actor. Last year, remember, they also concurred on this lineup — and they proved to be correct.

Alec baldwin Emmy

This year's list, they say, will include reigning champ Alec Baldwin ("30 Rock"), three-time winner Tony Shalhoub ("Monk"), a pair of three-time nominees – Steve Carell ("The Office") and Charlie Sheen ("Two and a Half Men") – and newcomers David Duchovny ("Californication") and Jim Parsons ("The Big Bang Theory").

BEST COMEDY ACTOR
Alec Baldwin, "30 Rock" – Rob, Boomer
Steve Carell, "The Office" – Rob, Boomer
David Duchovny, "Californication" – Rob, Boomer
Jim Parsons, "The Big Bang Theory" – Rob, Boomer
Tony Shalhoub, "Monk" – Rob, Boomer
Charlie Sheen, "Two and a Half Men" – Rob, Boomer

BOOMER'S COMMENTARY: There is no doubt that Alec Baldwin (last year's winner) and Steve Carell will return as nominees in this category again. The same is probably said of Tony Shalhoub and Charlie Sheen, but neither is 100% safe. Lee Pace of "Pushing Daisies" was also nominated last year, but I don't think the cancellation of his series helps his chances at all. 

For these final two slots, I look toward David Duchovny (he is very well-liked within the industry even though his show only marginally so) and Jim Parsons (extremely funny and getting a full-on publicity assault to boost his chances with Emmy voters).  Zach Braff is a possible threat for the final season of "Scrubs." Kevin Connolly had his best season yet on "Entourage" and was rewarded with a Golden Globe nomination.  Adrian Grenier probably takes a back seat to his co-star if only one of them makes the cut.

ROB'S COMMENTARY: All due respect to Mr. Shalhoub, but I think that unless the voters want to honor some fresh faces, he will make it in this group again this year, regardless of how good he was last season. Same probably goes for Charlie Sheen. I also think Baldwin and Carell are locks, and Duchovny should probably expect a nod this year after inexplicably missing the cut last year.

That leaves Jim Parsons as the new face in this crowd, a likely nominee, but by no means certain, with Lee Pace ("Pushing Daisies"), Jay Mohr ("Gary Unmarried"), the two leads from "Entourage" (Adrien Grenier and Kevin Connolly) and hopefully Kyle Bornheimer from the canceled "Worst Week."

Photo: Mark Boster, Los Angeles Times

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