Emmy Awards 2013: Breaking Bad takes home best drama prize but Bryan Cranston misses out

Liberace biopic Behind the Candelabra was among the night's big winners, while Homeland actress Claire Danes claimed her second prize for lead actress


Breaking Bad marked its imminent conclusion by triumphing at last night’s Emmy Awards with a win for outstanding drama series. The hit US show – which ends after five series next Sunday 29 September – beat off stiff competition from Downton Abbey, Game of Thrones, Mad Men, Homeland and House of Cards. 


But despite taking home one of the evening’s top awards, the drama – which follows chemistry teacher-turned-meth dealer Walter White and his partnership with former student Jesse Pinkman – failed to land the lead and supporting actor prizes. In one of the night’s biggest shocks, the show’s star, Bryan Cranston, lost out in the lead actor category to The Newsroom’s Jeff Daniels, despite being widely tipped to claim the award. 

Aaron Paul (who plays Pinkman) also went home empty-handed, losing the supporting category to Bobby Cannavale for Boardwalk Empire, but the show did score the best supporting actress award with Anna Gunn’s portrayal of Skyler White triumphing over the likes of Maggie Smith (Downton Abbey), Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) and Christina Hendricks (Mad Men).

Three of the evenings top awards went to Liberace biopic Behind the Candelabra, with Michael Douglas recognised for best actor in a miniseries or movie, beating British actor Benedict Cumberbatch. The HBO film also claimed the gong for best TV movie and best director for Steven Soderbergh.

Homeland’s Claire Danes won the lead actress in a drama category for the second consecutive year, while the show’s writer Henry Bromell – who passed away earlier this year – won a posthumous award for his work. 

David Fincher made history by winning Netflix’s first Emmy Award for his work directing their original series House of Cards, while The Voice won top honours for outstanding reality-competition programme. 

Over in the comedy corner, Modern Family took home best comedy series, with director Gail Mancuso also recognised in her category. Jim Parsons won his third lead actor award for his performance as Sheldon Cooper in The Big Bang Theory, while Julia Louis-Dreyfus claimed her second acting gong for Veep.