Emmy Awards 2012: Damian Lewis, Downton Abbey, Sherlock Lead British Charge For Sunday Ceremony

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When the stars gather on the red carpet for the Primetime Emmy Awards on Sunday evening in LA, there’ll be more than a few British faces hoping not to leave the ceremony empty-handed.

Unsurprisingly, Downton Abbey and Sherlock are leading the charge for some home-grown honours, but they’re not the only ones. Here are all the Brits to cross your fingers for, as they face some stiff overseas competition on television’s biggest night of the year…

With seven major nominations (16 in total), Downton Abbey is our leading contender by far.

The upstairs-downstairs tale is nominated for Best Drama Series, an upgrade on last year’s victory for Best Mini-Series or Movie. Biggest competition is probably Homeland or the enduring Mad Men.

Nominations have gone to Michelle Dockery and Hugh Bonneville in the Lead Actress and Actor categories (as Lady Mary Crawley and Earl of Grantham respectively), and there are four nods in the supporting categories too – Dame Maggie Smith (Countess Dowager) and Joanne Froggatt (Anna) are competing for Best Actress, while Brendan Coyle (Mr Bates) and John Carter (Mr Carson) are both up for Best Actor. So it could be a very big night, although there are strong rivals, mostly from the casts of The Good Wife and Mad Men.

Steven Moffatt caught a wave at BAFTA earlier in the year for his Sherlock/Doctor Who combo, but it’s one episode of Sherlock – the much-discussed Scandal in Belgravia, complete with Lara Pulver’s whip – that has caught the attention of the Emmy judges, with three nods, for Best Mini-Series or Movie, Benedict Cumberbatch for Best Lead Actor in the same category, and his cohort Martin Freeman for Best Supporting Actor.

Sherlock’s not the only screen detective getting the fanfare. In the very same category, unfortunately, he’s up against BBC America’s Luther – nominated for Best Mini-Series or Movie, with Idris Elba also up for Best Lead Actor.

Possibly one of the strongest contenders on the night is Damian Lewis, for his intense portrayal of Nicholas Brody in Homeland, the drama series (also nominated) that has caught the imagination on both sides of the Atlantic. But it’s a very strong category, with critics’ favourite Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) in there, and our own Hugh Bonneville.

Jon Hamm may be used to soaking up all the Mad Men attention, but our eyes should also be on Jared Harris, nominated this year for Best Supporting Actor for his role of the tragic Lane Pryce.

No stranger to awards ceremonies, Emma Thompson has somehow found time between writing children’s books and adapting screenplays to be nominated for Best Actress in a Mini-Series or Movie, for her role of She in The Song of Lunch (part of the PBS Masterpiece series).

Clive Owen gets a nod for his portrayal of Ernest Hemingway in HBO’s Hemingway and Gelhorn. His TV movie co-star Nicole Kidman is also nominated.

On the lighter side, the creative machine of Armando Iannucci gets recognition for Best Comedy Series with Veep, his look at life inside the Vice-President’s office, which was commissioned for a second series before it had barely started the first.

And finally, even the Reality Show genre has not escaped the British brush, with our own Cat Deeley nominated for her hosting role in So You Think You Can Dance.

So, even if not everyone wins, we can be sure – statistically speaking and fingers crossed – that there will be a sufficient amount of silver on those tables to call it another big British night.

All the results as they happen, with news and pictures live from the US, overnight on Sunday, here at HuffPost UK.

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