2012 Emmy Awards Live Blog

Sheila Marikar

LOS ANGELES, Calif. — TV’s biggest night of the year is here, and ABCNews.com is backstage at the 2012 Emmy Awards to fill you in on all the action. Check back and keep refreshing for the latest news and gossip.

11:00 p.m. — That’s a wrap! Check out “Good Morning America” at 7 a.m. ET Monday for interviews with the winners and highlights from tonight’s celebrations, and check back with ABCNews.com and GoodMorningAmerica.com for the best quotes from backstage and the Emmy after parties.

10:56 p.m. — “Modern Family’s” reign continues: the ABC heavyweight wins best comedy series for the third year in a row. And in line with the rest of the night, creator Steve Levitan’s acceptance speech gets cut by the walk off music.

10:55 p.m. — Michael J. Fox brings the crowd to its feet for the first time tonight while presenting the award for best comedy series.

10:47 p.m. — And freshman drama “Homeland” knocks the reigning champion “Mad Men” off its mantle. The cast and crew take the stage to accept the best drama series Emmy, the first in Showtime’s history.

10:46 p.m. — But ultimately, “Game Change” wins the final award of the category — best miniseries or movie.

10:40 p.m. – Kevin Costner brings it back to “Hatfields & McCoys,” scoring the best actor in a miniseries or movie award and likening his trophy to an Olympic medal.

10:36 p.m. — “Game Change” wins again for outstanding directing. Jay Roach accepts, he also directed “Recount.”

10:28 p.m. — Julianne Moore wins her first primetime Emmy, best actress in a miniseries or movie for “Game Change.” “I feel so validated because Sarah Palin gave me a big thumbs down,” she laughs.

10:14 p.m. — And the best supporting actor in a miniseries or movie goes to … Tom Berenger for “Hatfields & McCoys.”

10:06 p.m. — Jessica Lange wins best supporting actress in a miniseries or movie for “American Horror Story.” She also won an Emmy for 2009′s “Grey Gardens.”

10:04 p.m. — A very pregnant Claire Danes is asked backstage about how her child might feel about her Emmy win. “It’s going to be some time before my child cares about this, if ever,” she jokes. “His person may not care about this award, but I do.”

9:55 p.m. — “The Daily Show” wins best reality show again. Jon Stewart makes his way to the podium after literally and hilariously being dragged to the ground by fellow contender Jimmy Fallon.

9:45 p.m. — Two Emmys for Louis C.K.! He wins best writing for a variety special for “Louis C.K. Live at the Beacon Theatre.” His reaction: “Two Emmys, wow, that’s nice.”

9:38 p.m. — And “Homeland’s” almost-sweep of the drama awards continues — the superb Claire Danes wins for best actress in a drama. Best line of her speech: “Mandy Patinkin, holler.”

9:28 p.m. — Relative newcomer Damian Lewis scores the best actor in a drama award for last year’s breakout hit, “Homeland.” “I don’t really believe in judging art,” he says, “but I thought I’d show up just in case.” Jon Hamm and Bryan Cranston look none too pleased.

9:27 p.m. — Jimmy Kimmel’s stunts are pretty out there. First, Tracy Morgan and nunchuks; now, Josh Groban covering One Direction to a montage of Kimmel’s greatest TV moments.

9:20 p.m. — Backstage, best reality TV host winner Tom Bergeron clears up the reports about professional dancer Maksim Chmerkovskiy leaving “DWTS.” “He said that it was taken out of context,” Bergeron says. “At the end of his contract, which runs through two more seasons, he’s thinking of pursuing acting. … He’s going to be with us beyond this season.”

9:17 p.m. — “Downtown Abbey” matriarch Maggie Smith wins best supporting actress in a drama. She’s not here, so presenters Connie Britton and Hayden Panettiere accept on her behalf.

9:05 p.m. — “Breaking Bad’s” Aaron Paul wins the best supporting actor in a drama Emmy for the second time. “To the rest of the writers, thank you for not killing me off,” he shouts. “That was the plan!”

9:00 p.m.

— “DWTS” host Tom Bergeron scores the award for best reality TV host, sneaks in a plug for the “All-Stars” season, which begins tomorrow. Smart.

8:58 p.m. — … And the award for best save goes to Seth MacFarlane, who began presenting best reality TV host at the wrong mike and then saved himself by saying in a Stewie voice, “This is what happens when you don’t come to rehearsal.”

8:52 p.m. — “The Amazing Race” clinches the trophy for best reality program. It’s won the award every year since 2003, with the exception of 2010, when “Top Chef” won.

8:46 p.m. — Julia Louis-Dreyfus scores the Emmy for best actress in a comedy for

“Veep,” says sweetly, through tears, that she doesn’t see anything funny about her being the vice president of the United States.

8:39 p.m. — Jon Cryer wins best actor in a comedy for "Two and a Half Men." "I'm stunned," he says. After all the turmoil the show's been through since Charlie Sheen's downward spiral, Cryer sums up his sentiments simply: "This is crazy."

8:37 p.m. — Even though the Emmys are feeling like an extended PSA for “Modern Family,” the skit featuring Ken Jeong stepping in as the new Lily was pretty funny.

8:33 p.m. — And the “Modern Family” domination continues. Steve Levitan wins best directing for a comedy.

8:20 p.m. – Louis C.K. grabs the Emmy for outstanding writing in a comedy for his FX series “Louie.” “Your daddy won an Emmy,” he said to his kids at home.

8:12 p.m. — Eric Stonestreet scores the first Emmy of the night for the second year in a row — best supporting actor in a comedy. He sweetly thanks his fellow nominee and “Modern Family” husband Jesse Tyler Ferguson first, saying, “There would be no Cam without Mitch.”

8:08 p.m. — The trend Ricky Gervais started when he first hosted the Golden Globes in 2010 is still going strong: insults rule. Kimmel made fun of Cat Deeley, Jon Hamm, and pretty much every actor in the Nokia Theater in his opening monologue, though not as sharply as Gervais.

8:07 p.m. — President Obama isn’t immune. “I don’t think the president should be watching ‘Homeland’ for the same reason I don’t think Charlie Sheen should be watching ‘Breaking Bad.’”

8:05 p.m.

— First zing of the night, Kimmel on what he finds fascinating about “Downtown Abbey:” “If really gives you a sense of what it must have been like to grow up in Mitt Romney’s house.”

8:00 p.m. — Half a minute into the official Emmy Awards and we’ve already got a naked Lena Dunham! The “Girls” star and Emmy nominee appeared naked, on a toilet, eating cake during the pre-taped montage to open the show, which also featured a sobbing, over-botoxed Jimmy Kimmel, bathrobe-clad entourage of A-list TV actresses, and every reality TV host you could name off the top of your head. Julia Louis-Dreyfuss, Kathy Bates, Mindy Kaling and more punched Kimmel until he got his act together. As far as awards show opens go, it was pretty epic.

7:49 p.m. — “Dancing with the Stars” host Tom Bergeron promised that the “All-Stars” season of the show, which premieres tomorrow, will up the ante. ”Out of the gate, you’re going to see some of the best performances you’ve ever seen,” he said.

7:46 p.m.

— Edie Falco looks stunning in navy blue and white Stella McCartney gown. We’re in a good amount of disbelief that she’s about to turn 50.

7:30 p.m. — With the last season of “30 Rock” underway, Tina Fey is savoring every last moment of awards show goodness. “We’re gonna party like it’s 1996,” she said on the carpet. She also revealed that the show’s writers are preparing to script their own finale by watching the final episodes of other iconic comedies, like “Frasier.”

7:28 p.m. — Jesse Tyler Ferguson, however, is willing to criticize. The “Modern Family” actor (he’s also up for an Emmy) was in disbelief about the fact that a book about the hit series is coming out. “This is insane,” he said. “Like they need to make more money off the show.”

7:24 p.m. — “Modern Family’s” Sofia Vergara isn’t modest about her show dominating the Emmys (they’re up for 14 awards, she’s in the running for best supporting actress in a comedy). “We’re all here, all the cast, all the writers, all the kids,” she said on the carpet. “It’s a party for us.”

7:19 p.m. — Of course Kristen Wiig doesn’t have a typical approach to picking an Emmys dress. Wearing white Balenciaga on the red carpet, she told Lara Spencer she “wanted to look like a ghost.”

7:10 p.m. — After many trying months in her personal life, newly single “Project Runway” host Heidi Klum “wanted something fun and happy” to wear to the Emmys. Hence her aqua, low, low, low cut dress.

7:03 p.m. – Well this is cute. Alec Baldwin and his new wife Hiliara Thomas coordinated: his purple tie matches her glittering plum gown.

7:02 p.m. – It’s hard to ignore the cleavage on the red carpet. Among the stars strutting down the carpet in low cut, bust-boosting gowns: “Homeland’s” Morena Baccarin, “Two Broke Girls’” Kat Dennings, and “Top Chef’s” Padma Lakshmi.

7:00 p.m. — Though the 90 degree temps have everyone else wilting, the A-listers appear to be shrugging off the heat. Jon Hamm looked like the epitome of cool in his tux (would we expect anything less from the “Mad Men” star?) and a hunter green clad Allison Williams of “Girls” told the New York Times, “I’m amazed by the well-behaved sweat glands.”

PHOTOS: 2012 Emmy Awards Red Carpet