The Emmy Awards opened strong with Jim Parsons winning his fourth Emmy in a row as he took home another win for Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for his work as Sheldon Cooper on the CBS sitcom, The Big Bang Theory. The new Emmy will accompany his Big Bang pay bump nicely as Parsons, along with his main co-stars Johnny Galecki (Roseanne) and Kaley Cuoco (Charmed), just received a huge pay hike to $1 million per episode following tense negotiations with the network and production studio, which will now put them in an exclusive league along with the Friends cast.
Parsons’ fourth consecutive Emmy win not only secures his significant Big Bang pay bump, but also allows him to join the ranks of all-time sitcom winners, such as Kelsey Grammer (Cheers and Frasier) and Michael J. Fox (Family Ties and The Good Wife). Fresh off his lucrative new deal, The Big Bang Theory star made self-deprecating remarks regarding his fourth consecutive win for Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, and thanked his late father for encouraging and instilling confidence in him to pursue his dreams.
Earlier this summer, Parsons and his principal cast mates engaged in tense negotiations with their show’s production studio, Warner Brothers TV, over their new contracts for the mega-hit CBS series, The Big Bang Theory. The original five cast members of the hit sitcom were working without contracts and collectively demanded to be paid $1 million per episode. Ultimately, the show’s three principal stars, Parsons, Galecki, and Cuoco, were granted their salary demands. The stars were locked in aggressive contract negotiations with Warner Brothers TV heading into production for Season 8. The filming for the upcoming season was subsequently delayed a few weeks due to the negotiation standoff. However, it has been speculated that the season premiere will be completed and air on its scheduled fall premiere date of September 22.
In addition to Emmy Award-winner Jim Parsons scoring his fourth consecutive win to accompany his Big Bang pay bump, other big Emmy Award winners for the night included the cast of Breaking Bad, which saw a fourth Best Lead Actor win for Bryan Cranston as chemistry teacher-turned-meth drug lord, Walter White aka Heisenberg. While Aaron Paul took home his third Emmy win for Best Supporting Actor and Anna Gunn became a two-time Emmy Award winner for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama. Moreover, the now-departed, much beloved AMC series also took another Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing, as well as another Best Drama Emmy.
Among the other notable winners, Emmy Awards also went to ABC’s Modern Family, which won its fifth Best Comedy Series Emmy in a row and has now tied the record set by NBC’s Frasier. CBS’ The Good Wife star Julianna Margulies was honored as Best Lead Actress in a Drama Series. While Julia Louis-Dreyfus received her third consecutive Best Comedy Actress Emmy for the political comedy Veep on HBO. Despite the impressive roster of Netflix and cable TV show nominees, shows like Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black and House of Cards, Showtime’s Shameless, and HBO’s True Detective neither benefited from tactical category choices nor garnered any Emmy Awards this year, despite their popularity and stellar storytelling.
While Jim Parsons scored his fourth consecutive Emmy Award win to accompany his Big Bang pay bump, other significant Emmy Award winners included Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman for BBC’s Sherlock: His Last Vow as Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Movie, as well as comedienne Sarah Silverman’s win for Variety Show Writing. The Emmy Awards also held its traditional memorial tribute to industry members who have died in the past year. Images of stars including James Garner, Ruby Dee, Sid Caesar, Carmen Zapata, Lauren Bacall, and Elaine Stritch appeared on the big screen as the ceremony paid tribute to those talented performers and industry members lost. The presentation concluded with Billy Crystal giving a moving tribute to longtime friend and fellow comedian Robin Williams, who tragically committed suicide just two weeks ago.
By Leigh Haugh