Emmy Poll 2014: Who Should Win Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie?

The six nominees for the 2014 Emmy for Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie all share one thing in common: None of them have an Emmy on their mantle (or anywhere else in their home, for that matter).

RELATED Emmy Poll 2014: Who Should Win Lead Actress in a Miniseries or Movie?

One of these fellas, of course, won’t be like the other by the time the August 25 telecast is over, but until then, let’s celebrate their unity in the “It’s an Honor Just to Be Nominated” Club by listing all six — and the number of career Emmy nods they’ve tallied.

To be fair, let’s list in order from most nominations to fewest:

Idris Elba, Luther — four nominations
Martin Freeman, Fargo — three nominations
Benedict Cumberbatch, Sherlock: His Last Vow — three nominations
Mark Ruffalo, The Normal Heart — two nominations (though only one for acting)
Billy Bob Thornton, Fargo — one nomination
Chiwetel Ejiofor, Dancing On the Edge — one nomination

What would you do if you had the power to honor one of these fine talents when the Emmys are handed out on Aug. 25 ? Take our poll below to vote for your favorite, then hit the comments to justify your pick!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. MattArmando says:

    Mark should win, but it’s obvious that Thornton will. A foreseeable upset would be Freeman.
    SHOULD WIN: Mark Ruffalo
    WILL WIN: Billy Bob Thornton

  2. The Beach says:

    Wow, those are some powerhouse performances. I haven’t seen “Dancing on the Edge” but any of these fine actors would be worthy…tough category. I loved Fargo, was addicted to Luther and was full of wonderful acting.

  3. Cori says:

    The Normal Heart was beautiful. I want it to win all the awards. I’m just sad not all the supporting actors from the movie can win. They all deserve it!

  4. TV Gord says:

    I am going for the dark horse: Martin Freeman. His performance was compelling and I couldn’t look away or be distracted in any way when he was on screen.

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  6. Jerry says:

    This is a packed category and I can say for sure that all 6 deserved their spots. (Imagine if True Detective is in the mini-series category!). I know the fans will surely vote for Benedict Cumberbatch (which is why he is leading the poll), but I think it will come down to Billy Bob Thornton or Mark Ruffalo, and I’m leaning towards the formal. But any of the 6 can win, and I won’t get upset!

    • Sara says:

      I am pretty positive it will probably be Billy Bob Thornton who gets it, but if I had the sole power to hand out that award I would give it to Benedict Cumberbatch. He’s just so spot on as Sherlock! But as you said, any one of these actors could take the statue and I wouldn’t be upset.

  7. Faye says:

    I won’t be unhappy which of one these fine actors wins. I loved Normal Heart but it was such a collaborative effort that it seems almost wrong for one person to be awarded I’d prefer Martin over Billy Bob but truly, Benedict is my favorite. And then there is the formidable Mr Elba.

  8. CBWBDK1 says:

    Benedict should win, but he wo’n’t because he isn’t amurican.

    • d4h8a15r16m23a42 says:

      Well Martin Freeman, Idris Elba, and Chiwetel Ejiofor are all also not American. The reason Cumberbatch won’t win is cause Sherlock wasn’t very good this year.

  9. Becky says:

    Martin Freeman had a Walter White type of role…starts out as a door mat and becomes the one who knocks, so to speak! Compelling, believable, and frankly scarier than Billy Bob’s ruthless killer Malvo. MF for the win!

  10. Isanycbel says:

    The Normal Heart was a powerful piece of cinema. I truly hope Mark Ruffalo takes it home this year!

  11. Rebecca Parker says:

    After “The Normal Heart”, I didn’t think I’d root for anyone but Ruffalo, but Freeman blew me away in “Fargo.” He TRANSFORMED throughout. I wouldn’t be mad at either of the two of them winning (and Thornton was amazing too, but didn’t have much range for the character, understandably so).

  12. dreamlife613 says:

    Mark Ruffalo was excellent in The Normal Heart.

  13. me says:

    Billy was gud but definitely the deserved is cumberbatch…..he is just too brilliant in sherlock….his dialogue delivery,his spontaneity makes him one of d best he added life once more to d fictional character created by a c doyle…n he proved dat robert downey is not d best sherlock!!!

  14. Jax&Juice's Girl says:

    Billy Bob Thronton hands down will win though I would say Idris Elba even though I never seen Luther but cuase he’s just a freakin AWESOME actor. But my money is on Billy Bob, FARGO was a great show glad it’s coming back for S2!

  15. Lynn Graham says:

    I think any one of them are excellent choices. But I have to say I would love Benedict Cumberbatch to win. The show has one every award going including a Bafta for the writers and the co star. How can it win everything and still not recognise the star.

    I would love if the US were the first to give Mr Cumberbatch the honour. His performance in His Last Vow was outstanding. But over three seasons he has been amazing but constantly overlooked by the industry awards.

    • Vixey says:

      I would also love Benedict Cumberbatch to win. I think you are spot on about everyone in Sherlock being properly acknowledged and it does seem bizarre that they over look the star.

      Especially since, Benedict Cumberbatch has been consistently fantastic as Sherlock.

      Delivering lightning fast monologues and heart stopping performances, doing heroic stunts and making every show memorable. Don’t even get me started on how ADORABLE and SEXY he is!

      Lets hope this is the award he finally wins! *fingers crossed*

  16. dru says:

    what a strong category! they were all great

  17. RJ says:

    Martin Freeman. He was brilliant in Fargo.
    Sadly, I really doubt that he’ll win :(

  18. SLS says:

    I really really really really hope its Cumberbatch and really really really really hope its not Ruffalo or Thornton.

    • SFH says:

      I agree, though sadly by experience of recent awards I expect just that to happen. I loved Fargo, but Thornton doesn’t have much of a range to play there. That’s not his fault, I just don’t think it justifies the award when there are so many other deserving nominees. If they must go for Fargo (which earlier awards have already been pretty generous to) I’d prefer they give it to Martin who has really transformed his character over the course of the series. Then again he’s also nominated for Best Supporting Actor on Sherlock while Benedict has just this one nomination going and I just think Benedict deserves it so much! His Sherlock is so extremely nuanced and complex, the development of the character throughout the show that he’s portrayed so far is enormous and even if you only look at His Last Vow it’s such a brilliant and intriguing performance! Sadly, while the 3 episodes per season every 2 years cycle has proven to work well for the people involved, in my mind it has also contributed to Sherlock being ignored outrageously when it comes to actually getting awards for the acting. Like, critics never tire to praise the performances at the time of the episodes being aired, but by the time prizes are awarded all the other performances that happened later in the year just seem to be more vividly in mind, leaving Sherlock nominees with a disadvantage despite their phenomenal acting and watching that happen over and over again really hurts. (Sorry for the rant, just had to get that out.)

  19. Britta Unfiltered says:

    I love how Martin Freeman played so against type in Fargo. I am rooting for him. I’m not sure who’s really going to win it. I was thinking Thornton for awhile, but I think I’m going to have the faith that Freeman can pull it off. His performance was really something special and so unlike anything he’s ever done.

  20. Any other year my vote would be for Benedict Cumberbatch. But, this year I’d vote for his ” Sherlock ” sidekick, Martin Freeman, who was mesmerizing in ” Fargo ‘ !

  21. Cez Marie says:

    Benedict Cumberbatch deserves to win as he is just amazing in his acting portrayal as the fast talking sleuth. Every episode, he brings the character to life in ways that no other actor can. All these actors are all talented. But Benedict is super talented! I have watched him in other roles and he’s that good! He should not be overlooked.

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