Fox is making a case for its crime anthology series “Accused” for this year’s Emmys.
The freshman broadcast series will vie for consideration in the limited or anthology series categories, and Variety can exclusively reveal the creative teams’ plans for submitting its sprawling ensemble and its respective races.
Despite each episode tackling a new story with different characters, setting and subject matter, the actors have opted to divide themselves into separate acting races.
Read: Variety Awards Circuit’s Emmys Hub
Emmy winner Michael Chiklis (“The Shield”), who stars in the pilot episode titled “Scott’s Story,” portraying a successful neurosurgeon on trial for providing material assistance to a school shooter, will be submitted in the lead actor limited category. His episode will also serve as the writing submission for creator and executive producer Howard Gordon. Furthermore, Chiklis stepped behind the camera as a director for the “Jack’s Story” episode with Jason Ritter. He’ll be among three directing submissions for the anthology, including debut TV directors who are already household names — Oscar-winner and four-time Emmy nominee Marlee Matlin for “Ava’s Story” and Emmy winner Billy Porter for “Robyn’s Story.”
Other leading candidates from the cast include Whitney Cummings, who stars in the episode “Brenda’s Story,” where she plays a stand-up comic who is assaulted by a fellow comedian. She’ll be the sole submission for lead actress limited.
It’s been 37 years since Malcolm-Jamal Warner received his sole Emmy nom for playing Theo Huxtable on “The Cosby Show.” Coming off his second Grammy nom for best spoken word album, he’s hoping to be a surprise lead actor inclusion for his role as Kendall Gomillion, a father whose daughter is sexually assaulted and takes justice into his own hands. In addition, his co-star from “Kendall’s Story,” veteran actor Wendell Pierce as the detective investigating the case, will campaign for his first career Emmy nom for supporting drama actor.
Nonbinary actor J. Harrison Ghee has already exhibited a breakout year. Kicking it off as one of Variety’s 10 Broadway Stars to Watch, they have chosen to submit as lead drama actor alongside Chiklis and Warner for the Porter-helmed episode in which they play Kevin, a drag performer who falls for a closeted gay man.
“Accused” will mark one of four possible shots at Emmy recognition for three-time Emmy winner Margo Martindale. The veteran character actress will be submitted for her episode “Laura’s Story” and her role as Maureen on “The Watcher” in supporting actress limited. She’s also eligible for guest drama actress for Peacock’s “Mrs. Davis” and Showtime’s “Your Honor.”
Fox also plans to submit the series in casting, cinematography, editing, sound editing and sound mixing categories.
It’ll be difficult for the show to crack the lineup, with multiple series angling for only five or six available slots (pending the number of submissions) and competing against Apple’s “Black Bird,” HBO’s “Love & Death” and Netflix’s “Beef.”
“Accused” was recently renewed for a second season by Fox after premiering as one of television’s highest-rated dramas debuts in two years.