Pete Hammond’s Emmy Predictions 2022: Lead Actress Limited Series – Will Playing Controversial Real Life Women Pay Off?

This is a choice category this year that leans, like its male counterpart, to some heavyweight names playing other heavyweight names. It has clearly been a great year for female roles in Limited Series if you simply consider some of the women who didn’t make the cut, including Julia Roberts who was sensational as Martha Mitchell in Gaslight, Jessica Biel as the murderous Texas housewife in Candy, Elle Fanning as the conflicted Michelle Carter who talked her boyfriend into suicide in The Girl From Plainville, Oscar winners Anne Hathaway, Renée Zellweger, and on and on. But let’s now take the contest to those still standing in this highly competitive category.

Toni Collette,The Staircase

As the wife who became a murder victim, Collette is a past winner at the Emmys and has been a multiple nominee so she can never be counted out of the race. Playing opposite Colin Firth, the pair received the only two nominations for this handsomely mounted and suspenseful series, but her reputation precedes her, and she could well triumph in the end, although it is a long shot.


Julia Garner, Inventing Anna

This young star seems to have the Midas touch at the Emmys. She has already won twice as Ruth in Ozark and finds herself double-nominated this time, not only for that show’s final season, but also stepping up to a leading role as the shady Russian-born pretender Anna Sorokin, who tries passing herself off as a rich German heiress, managing to invade New York society circles. If Garner is simply an Emmy magnet, kind of like Regina King, we will find out with a win here, but it is doubtful as the series doesn’t seem to be as popular with voters as some others in the game.

Lily James, Pam & Tommy

Pamela Anderson has never managed an Emmy nomination in her own career but, in one of life’s amusing ironies, she could prove just the ticket for James, who delivers such a dead-on brilliant and three-dimensional performance as the blonde bombshell star of Baywatch and could well take this prize. She’s that good, and you have to hope that Anderson would agree if she bothered to watch it—she claims she didn’t. It is a risky, brazen star turn and she delivers in every way.

Sarah Paulson, Impeachment: American Crime Story

This riveting retelling of the Bill Clinton/Monica Lewinsky political scandal provided several juicy acting opportunities among its huge cast. But it is eight-time Emmy nominee and past winner Paulson who brought it home with an all-in portrayal of Linda Tripp, the friend and colleague of Lewinsky who turned on her and ignited a huge mess all around. Paulson eerily brings this woman to life, layering in empathy and understanding that she is indeed a human being, though one who made big mistakes. It’s a performance that’s hard to turn away from.




Margaret Qualley, Maid

Qualley is quietly powerful as this young mother running from an abusive relationship and trying to start a new life as a domestic cleaner in order to give her daughter the chance she never had. It is only a shame that voters couldn’t find their way to also nominate Andie McDowell for her career-best performance as her wayward mother, and the series as well, but Qualley ably carries the flag in an impressive turn that brought her a second career nomination.

Amanda Seyfried, The Dropout

There is perhaps no real-life figure as uniquely fascinating, complicated, and downright strange as Theranos founder and fraudmeister Elizabeth Holmes, whose own story is still raging after being convicted of some very bad business practices as she tried to pass off a false medical miracle. She will be sentenced in September and could receive up to 20 years in prison right around the same time that, if my prediction is correct, Seyfried will be collecting her first Emmy.



Like those in the Supporting Actor category, this seems to be a big valentine to HBO’s The White Lotus, as well as setting some sort of single category acting record with no less than five of seven slots going to this show. If you were in The White Lotus, you are probably on your way to the Emmys. Connie Britton, Alexandra Daddario and Sydney Sweeney all play vacationers with a deal of wacky complexity that floors you. Natasha Rothwell runs the hotel spa with heartbreaking authenticity, but it is her No. 1 customer played by the inimitable Jennifer Coolidge who steals this show and will take the Emmy. Dopesick’s Kaitlyn Dever and Mare Winningham nab the only other two slots left, but it’s not enough to ruin Coolidge’s vacation.


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