HBO’s Writing and Directing Emmy Submissions Revealed for ‘Barry,’ ‘Euphoria’ and More (EXCLUSIVE)

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HBO is juggling multiple television shows for a shot at the Primetime Emmy Awards, which could make them a dominating force in all categories, particularly for directing and writing.

Just wrapping its season finale, “Barry” is expected to match, if not exceed, its previous 18 nomination haul last time. Actor and producer Bill Hader will be among the “locks” for outstanding comedy series and lead actor (comedy). Still, with two previous Emmy noms for directing, he’ll be in the running again with the episode “710N,” the sixth episode that finds the titular hitman attacked by Traci’s gang. Three “Barry” episodes will also vie for attention in the writing categories: “710N” (by Duffy Boudreau), “candy asses” (by Liz Sarnoff) and the finale “starting now” (by Hader and Alec Berg).

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With Zendaya leading the charge for lead actress (drama) for her towering performance in the second season of “Euphoria,” the show is looking for a better showing than its inaugural season, which only landed a single Primetime nom (it received five creative arts noms). In addition, Sam Levinson’s episode “Stand Still Like the Hummingbird,” which he wrote and directed, will seek consideration. Also a showcase for Zendaya’s acting work, it features her character Rue walking into the Howard household where Leslie (Nika King) has staged an intervention with her friends, but not before revealing Cassie’s (Sydney Sweeney) relationship with Nate that ends with Rue burglarizing a house, escaping police and reaching her drug-dealer Laurie’s home (played by guest actress drama contender Martha Kelly).

After taking all five available slots at the Directors Guild of America Awards with “Succession,” the third season of Jesse Armstrong’s satirical comedy has submitted six of its episodes for director consideration: Mark Mylod (“All the Bells Say”), Lorene Scafaria (“Too Much Birthday”), Robert Pulcini and Shari Springer Berman (“Lion in the Meadow”), Andrij Parekh (“What It Takes”), Kevin Bray (“Retired Janitors of Idaho”) and Cathy Yan (“The Disruption”). Armstrong’s episode “All the Bells Say,” will represent in the writing categories.

Another returning winner for HBO is “Hacks” with Jean Smart and Hannah Einbinder, closing out its eight-episode sophomore season. The show won both writing and directing categories last year, and will look to mimic the success again with Lucia Aniello, Paul W. Downs (also contending for supporting actor) and Jen Statsky for writing the recently-aired finale, “The One, the Only.” In addition, Aniello will seek a directing nom for helming the season opener, “There Will Be Blood.”

Everett Collection - Credit: Everett Collection
Everett Collection - Credit: Everett Collection

Everett Collection

The last time “Sex and the City” won an Emmy was in 2004, with lead and supporting actress (comedy) winners Sarah Jessica Parker and Cynthia Nixon walking away with the statuettes. Now with the revival series “And Just Like That…,” it’s still unknown if the new title and return will feel familiar or take a backseat to more recent entries. One of the other returning “City” Emmy winners could be showrunner Michael Patrick King. He was the premiere guest on Variety’s new video series “Showrunner Sitdown” with editor-at-large Kate Aurthur. For directing, King submitted the season finale “Hello It’s Me,” alongside star Nixon, who helmed “Diwali.” For writing, the network submitted the funeral episode “Little Black Dress” and the episode “Sex and the Widow,” penned by Julia Rottenberg and Elisa Zuritsky.

Fresh off an Oscar nomination for writing “Don’t Look Up,” Adam McKay has four projects pursing Emmy love this year, mostly with HBO. Along with executive producing the HBO docuseries “The Invisible Plot” and a guaranteed mention as one of the producers for “Succession,” he’ll be contending with his own show, “The Winning Time: Rise of the Lakers Dynasty,” which has been a subtle awards spoiler waiting in the wings. He’ll be among the hopefuls for directing (drama) for the pilot episode titled “The Swan,” which introduces the audience to the iconic 1980s basketball team with the likes of Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Finally, McKay has another shot in the outstanding television movie category with Hulu’s comedy-horror film “Fresh,” starring Sebastian Stan.

In addition to McKay’s episode, HBO also submitted helmers Tanya Hamilton (“Pieces of a Man”) and Salli Richardson-Whitfield (“Promised Land”) for “Winning Time” directing. McKay’s episode was also offered for writing, written by Max Borenstein and Jim Hecht, along with Richardson-Whitfield’s.

One of the frontrunners for outstanding limited or anthology series, the black comedy “The White Lotus,” which was entirely written and directed by Mike White, doesn’t have the daunting task of choosing an episode, as the limited categories don’t require it for someone who helms the show’s entirety.

HBO is also submitting the following:

“The Staircase”
Directing: Antonio Campos (“911”)
Writing: Antonio Campos (“911”), Maggie Cohn (“Seek and Ye Shall”)

“The Flight Attendant”
Directing: Silver Tree (“Seeing Double”) and Pete Chatmon (“Drowning Women”)
Writing: Liz Sagal, Steve Yockey (“Drowning Women”)

Directing: Melina Matsoukas (“Reunited, Okay?”) and Prentice Penny (“Everything Gonna Be, Okay?”)
Writing: Issa Rae (“Everything Gonna Be, Okay?”), Prentice Penny (“Out, Okay?”), Amy Aniobi (“Reunited, Okay?”)

“Our Flag Means Death”
Directing: Taika Waititi (“Pilot”) and Andrew Deyoung (“Wherever You Go, There You Are”)
Writing: David Jenkins (“Wherever You Go, There You Go Are”) and Jenkins and Yvonne Zima (“Act of Grace”)

Directing: Charles McDougall (“Omelette”) and Melanie Mayron (“Boeuf Beef Bourguignon”)
Writing: Christopher Keyser, Daniel Goldfarb (“Chocolate Soufflé”)

Directing: James Gunn (“It’s Cow or Never”)
Writing: James Gunn (“It’s Cow or Never”)

“Scenes from a Marriage”
Directing: Hagai Levi (“The Illiterates”)
Writing: Hagai Levy (“The Illiterates”)

“The Sex Lives of College Girls”
Directing: Lila Neugebauer (“I Think I’m a Sex Addict”)
Writing: Mindy Kaling, Justin Noble (“Welcome to Essex”)

Directing: Ernest Dickerson (“Home”)
Writing: Robert Patino (“Home”)

“The Survivor”
Directing: Barry Levinson
Writing: Justine Juel Gillmer

“Station Eleven”
Directing: Hiro Murai (“Wheel of Fire”) and Jeremy Podeswa (“Unbroken Circle”)
Writing: Patrick Somerville (“Unbroken Circle”)

“A Black Lady Sketch Show”
Directing: Bridget Stokes (“Save My Edges, I’m a Donor!”)
Writing: Robin Thede, Tracey Ashley, Alrinthea Carter, Michelle Davis, Sonia Denis, Jonterri Gadson, Chloé Hilliard, Shenovia Large, Natalie McGill

“We Own This City”
Directing: Reinaldo Marcus Green
Writing: George Pelecanos, David Simon (“Part One”)

“The Gilded Age”
Directing: Michael Engler (“Let the Tournament Begin”),
Writing: Julian Fellowes (“Face the Music”)

“The Other Two”
Directing: Chris Kelly (“Pat Connects With Her Fans”)
Writing: Chris Kelly, Sarah Schneider (“Chase Gets Baptized” and “Chase and Pat Are Killing It”)

Directing: Rachel Lee Goldenberg (“Not like a shvantz right in the face”)
Writing: Ellen Rapoport (“Not like a shvantz right in the face”)

“Love Life”
Directing: Sam Boyd (“Mia Hines”)
Writing: Rachelle Williams-BenAry, Sam Boyd (“Mia Hines”)

The official prediction charts will launch on Thursday when the Emmy ballots are revealed. You can see the latest predictions on Variety Awards Circuit’s Emmy Collective page.

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