Emmy Predictions: Directing (Drama Series) – Hwang Dong-hyuk and Ben Stiller Become Challengers to the ‘Succession’ Nominated Trio

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Variety Awards Circuit section is the home for all awards news and related content throughout the year, featuring the following: the official awards predictions for the upcoming Oscars and Emmys ceremonies, curated by Variety senior awards editor Clayton Davis; Awards Circuit Column, a weekly analysis dissecting the trends and contenders by television editor Michael Schneider (for Emmys) and Davis (for Oscars); Awards Circuit Podcast, a weekly interview series with talent and an expert roundtable discussion; and Awards Circuit Video analyzes various categories and contenders by Variety's leading awards pundits. Variety's unmatched coverage gives its readership unbeatable exposure in print and online, as well as provide inside reports on all the contenders in this year's awards season races.

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UPDATED: August 11, 2022

2022 EMMYS PREDICTIONS:
OUTSTANDING DIRECTING FOR A DRAMA SERIES

AWARDS PREDICTION COMMENTARY:

Breaking down the contenders for directing drama, there are a few paths this category can take with triple doses of “Succession,” former winners and inaugural seasons.

Hwang Dong-Hyuk, “Red Light, Green Light” – “Squid Game” (Netflix)

Directing an entire season is impressive, and Hwang should accept all the kudos for his work. While the episode selection could have been more substantial with “Gangbu,” a pilot selection has often been nominated in this category. The last pilot to win this category was “The Handmaid’s Tale” by Reed Morano in 2017, which also won drama series.

Ben Stiller, “The We We Are” – “Severance” (Apple TV+)

The finale of the inaugural season was a nail-biter, and Stiller presented his most commanding presence in his career as a director. The final line, “She’s alive,” has never been better or more deeply felt. He could be a genuine challenger.

Mark Mylod, “All the Bells Say” – “Succession” (HBO)

The winner of the DGA Award, where “Succession” had all five slots, has to be considered the front-runner, but did the show perform too well, or will the three other inclusions siphon enough votes to allow another drama director to come up the middle? It does help that his episode is also nominated for writing.

Read moreVariety’s Awards Circuit Emmys Predictions Hub

Jason Bateman, “A Hard Way to Go” – “Ozark” (Netflix)

A 2019 winner in this category, Bateman is also nominated for lead actor in a drama series. Taking on the final season, let alone the final episode of a beloved series, he has a home run on his hands. If he wins lead actor, he would also be the first person to have victories in both those categories.

Writer/director Cathy Yan poses for a portrait to promote the film, “Dead Pigs”, at the Music Lodge during the Sundance Film Festival on Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018, in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Taylor Jewell/Invision/AP)
Writer/director Cathy Yan poses for a portrait to promote the film, “Dead Pigs”, at the Music Lodge during the Sundance Film Festival on Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018, in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Taylor Jewell/Invision/AP)

Cathy Yan, “The Disruption” – “Succession” (HBO)

Of the six episodes submitted by HBO, Yan’s, which examines Kendall and Logan’s public profiles as a Justice Dept. investigation looms, didn’t seem like the most likely candidate, especially since she missed out on a DGA nom. However, shockers always happen, so her inclusion may mean more than meets the eye.

Lorene Scafaria, “Too Much Birthday” – “Succession” (HBO)

Scarfaria has landed her first nom in this category. She takes on the seventh episode of the third season with a commanding force, as it takes place at Kendall’s (Jeremy Strong) wildly over-the-top 40th birthday party, introducing guest actor drama nominee Alexander Skarsgård.

Karyn Kusama, “Pilot” – “Yellowjackets” (Showtime)

The delight of seeing filmmaker Karyn Kusama recognized for her talents is so refreshing, considering a career that has included being overlooked multiple times for films like “Girlfight.” Landing her first Emmy nom, her vision has put Showtime back on the map. She could be a bona fide contender.

The complete television awards season calendar is linked here.

Read moreVariety’s Awards Circuit Oscars Predictions Hub

The 74th Primetime Emmy Awards will take place on Monday, Sept. 12, and air on NBC.

2021 category winner: Jessica Hobbs for the episode “War” from “The Crown” (Netflix)

ALL AWARDS CONTENDERS AND RANKINGS:

. - Credit: Courtesy of Sipa USA via AP
. - Credit: Courtesy of Sipa USA via AP

Courtesy of Sipa USA via AP

And The Nominees Are:

Rank

Show

Network

Director(s)

1

“Succession”

HBO

Mark Mylod

Episode submission: “All the Bells Say”

2

“Severance”

Apple TV+

Ben Stiller

Episode submission: “The We We Are”

3

“Squid Game”

Netflix

Hwang Dong-hyuk

Episode submission: “Red Light, Green Light”

4

“Succession”

HBO

Lorene Scafaria

Episode submission: “Too Much Birthday”

5

“Succession”

HBO

Cathy Yan

Episode submission: “The Disruption”

6

“Yellowjackets”

Showtime

Karyn Kusama

Episode submission: “Pilot”

7

“Ozark”

Netflix

Jason Bateman

Episode submission: “A Hard Way to Go”

2022 Primetime Emmy Awards Predictions

2022 Creative Arts Emmys Predictions

About the Primetime Emmy Awards (Emmys)

The Primetime Emmy Awards, better known as the Emmys, are given out by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (ATAS). Since 1949, the awards have recognized excellence in American primetime television programming. They are divided into three classes - Primetime Emmy Awards, the Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards (honors artisan achievements), and the Primetime Engineering Emmy Awards (recognizes significant engineering and technological contributions). The typical eligibility period is between June 1 and May 31 of any given year. The Television Academy comprises over 25,000 members, representing 30 professional peer groups, including performers, directors, producers, art directors and various artisans and executives.

  • The 74th Emmy Awards will take place on Monday, Sept. 12, and air on NBC.

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