CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:
And now, let's switch gears just a little, and go to the Emmys. The new Showtime drama "Homeland," and the ABC comedy "Modern Family," were two the big winners from last night 64th annual Primetime Emmy Awards. "Homeland" actually knocked "Mad Men" off from its perch as Best Drama Series. To tell us more, we have Sheila Marikar with us. She's an entertainment reporter and producer for ABCNews.com, and was actually backstage at the event.
So let's begin with "Modern Family" since they did so well. Four Emmys last night, including the third straight win for Outstanding Comedy. What do you think - was that deserved, or just completely predictable?
SHEILA MARIKAR: I think it was definitely predictable. But it's also one of the best comedies on TV right now. And it's a huge favorite, in and out of Hollywood. Julie Bowen getting that Best Supporting Actress award for the second year in a row - I think some people may have wanted to see Sofia Vergara get up there and have her turn; I certainly did. But you know, they were all very gracious, and very acknowledging of the fact that it is very much a collaborative effort.
And as corny as it might sound to say, they really are a family outside of the show, too. Backstage, they were all hugging; and celebrating at the after-parties, after the show. And it really feels like they're all in this together, and they are loving the success for as long as they have it. And if a new show comes around and kind of steals their thunder, well then, they've still got each other, and they'll be happy.
HEADLEE: Not predictable, though, was "Homeland." That's a drama on Showtime - a rookie drama. Claire Danes stars as a bipolar CIA officer, and Damian Lewis actually took the category for Best Actor in a Drama. He plays a Marine suspected of being an al-Qaida operative. And here's a clip of Damian Lewis, actually, accepting his award.
(SOUNDBITE OF EMMY AWARDS BROADCAST)
DAMIAN LEWIS: Hello, everybody. I - uh - I'm Damian Lewis. I'm one of those pesky Brits.
LEWIS: Apologies. I don't really believe in judging art, but I thought I'd show up just in case.
LEWIS: Turned out all right.
HEADLEE: That was definitely one of the most tweeted lines from the night. I mean, what did you think? It must have surprised you as well, for "Homeland" to do as well as it did.
MARIKAR: It was a surprise. I was definitely rooting for the show, but I didn't think that Damian Lewis was going to take that award, especially with Bryan Cranston and Jon Hamm - from "Mad Men," who's never won that award - on deck. And it was a huge win for "Homeland" and for Showtime, who - Showtime has never had a drama take home that Best Drama award at the Emmys.
I think it shows that there's something happening on cable, and it's been happening for a long time; that, you know, networks sometimes can't compete with, especially in that drama category. And "Homeland" is the newcomer. "Homeland" is kind of the new popular kid on the block. We've had "Mad Men" and "Breaking Bad" around for quite a while now. So I think that people are eager to see this show do well, and kind of get some momentum for something new.
HEADLEE: And this is also - obviously - a huge win for Showtime, which sort of knocked - put a ding into HBO's armor. There's so used to winning just about everything - in the drama category, at least.
MARIKAR: It's true - although HBO did have their time in the spotlight with "Game Change" winning, and Julianne Moore taking that award for Best Actress in a Miniseries or Movie. And I think that, you know, it's an ebb and flow, right?
MARIKAR: HBO had "Girls" come out this past season, too, and that was up for a couple of Emmys. And I think that we'll see them going head-to-head for a while.
HEADLEE: You know, Sheila, it was a little disappointing - for me, at least - to see so few people of color - anyone of color, that won an award for - in the acting category last night. Why?
MARIKAR: It's a good question. I think that that's a problem that Hollywood has had for a long time; that you just, frankly, don't have as many people of color in the industry, period. You know, again, I was really hoping for Sofia Vergara to get up there. There were a lot of great people of color nominated. I think that that's an issue in Hollywood that they say that they are aware of, but we're waiting for ...
HEADLEE: They're aware of it. They're not doing anything.
HEADLEE: We have exact, same discussion every single year.
MARIKAR: Yeah, it's true. I think that - one of the things that is promising, for me, is Mindy Kaling and her new show, that comes out on Fox in a couple of days. She's going to be the first woman of color to helm her own show since Wanda Sykes. And I'm hoping that "The Mindy Project" does really well and - you know, not just for her but for all - especially women of color, to be in that position and to sort of keep pushing the envelope from there.
HEADLEE: I - no, I can't wait for that show. I really like Mindy Kaling. But I can't let you go without asking you, who you thought stole the show on the red carpet, at least, in terms of what they were wearing. What do you think?
MARIKAR: Well, I love the trend of bright yellow, sort of fluorescent neon dresses that Julie Bowen, Julianne Moore and Claire Danes - three of the night's biggest winners - were all wearing. Online people are calling this color French's Yellow Mustard. It was a little bit more...
HEADLEE: I thought it was banana. Julianne Moore looked like she was being - ready to be peeled.
MARIKAR: Yeah. That's a...
MARIKAR: ...that's a good way to put it. In person, they all just looked absolutely stunning. I mean, Claire Danes is very pregnant and you would just - you wouldn't really know it, if you just looked at her head on. Sofia Vergara, though, I think might win my award for the best dress of the night, just - beaded emerald with cutouts everywhere. It was absolutely stunning.
HEADLEE: Sheila Marikar is an entertainment reporter and producer for ABCNews.com. She joined us from our NPR West studios in Culver City, California. Sheila, thanks so much.
MARIKAR: Thank you for having me.
HEADLEE: And that is our program for today. I'm Celeste Headlee. You've been listening to TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. We'll talk more tomorrow.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.