ENTERTAINMENT
19/07/2012 08:12 BST | Updated 19/07/2012 12:34 BST

British Hopes For Emmy Nominations: Downton Abbey, Damian Lewis... And, Cross Fingers, Hugh Laurie

UPDATE 2:30PM: - British hopes have been answered in the Emmy Award nominations announced this afternoon - but where's Hugh Laurie in the list?

Once again, the British star who has become a household name in the US for his work on House will go home empty-handed, after he failed to make it onto the short list.

The actor, famous for his comedy roles in the UK before completely transforming himself, along with accent, into the curmudgeonly, cantankerous but loveable Dr House, has been Emmy-nominated a whopping SIX TIMES for the role, but has left the ceremony without a gong on each occasion.

And now, as viewers said goodbye to House and his team for the last time as the show drew to a close earlier this year, Hugh Laurie will have to be content with the pair of Golden Globes he has scooped for his efforts.

But other Brits were more successful... catch up with all the nominations news here

British hopes are high for some overseas recognition when the prestigious Emmy Award nominations are announced this afternoon.

Among the home-grown talents gunning for glory in American’s biggest TV talent-fest are:

Hugh Laurie – He’s been nominated six times, but never won it. A win here would be particularly sentimental for the British star in his last outing as the misunderstood Dr House. Laurie can finally return to the UK after his extended and impressive tour of duty on American television, including two Golden Globe wins, and who knows what else… (Toughest competition likely to come from Kelsey Grammer, four-times Emmy Award winner for Frasier, with a recent return to form in Boss)

Downton Abbey – inexplicably named Best Miniseries last year, the record-breaking Victorian drama has switched categories this year, and is now in the running for Best Drama series. It’s got some high-calibre contenders though, including such names as Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, The Good Wife, Boardwalk Empire and current incumbent Mad Men.

michelle dockery

Michelle Dockery who plays Lady Mary Crawley in Downton Abbey

In terms of actors, Michelle Dockery, Elizabeth McGovern (UK-based so we’ll have her) and Dame Maggie Smith all made their mark, but it may be the ensemble quality of the cast ends up splitting the vote for any single lead recognition, although Dame Maggie won last year for a supporting role.

Sherlock – took on all comers at the BAFTAs earlier this year – can Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss’s contemporary take on the Victorian sleuth do the same Stateside?

benedict cumberbatchSherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch

Mad Men will be particularly hopeful for a run at Best Drama Series. If it wins this time around, it means a place in the record books with a fifth gong, ahead of West Wing, LA Law and Hill Street Blues, all of whom have four. (Meanwhile, Jon Hamm’s been nominated four times in the Leading Actor category, never won it yet.)

Veep – Armando Iannucci’s Stateside swipe at the inner workings of the highest office has already been recommissioned for a second series, but it may not have done enough yet to embed itself in voters’ hearts.

Damian Lewis – our favourite ginger-head, was nominated in the Golden Globes for his role of Brody in Homeland, but lost to Boss's Kelsey Grammer. He’ll be hoping the Emmys are more favourable. His co-star Clare Danes went home with a Globe, and a win here would seal a memorable year for the actress, also pregnant with her first child.

damian lewis

Damian Lewis and Clare Danes are contenders for Homeland

Emily Mortimer – Could walk away with any award for sheer wordsmithery, twisting her way around Aaron Sorkin’s lines in The Newsroom, but the show itself is not long in the tooth, and has polarised opinion, so a nod for Mortimer is a long shot. (CORRECTION: A sharp-eyed reader has clarified that The Newsroom will not be eligible for nominations this year, as it broadcast after the expiry date in the States, so we'll have to hope it stays in voters' memories by the time chances come round again next year.)

Kelly MacDonald – The Scottish actress made no small contribution to the enduring success of critically acclaimed Boardwalk Empire.