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Veep creator Armando Iannucci will exit the show despite Emmy win

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Eric Jamison/AP

Now that Veep has taken home the top Emmy prize for Outstanding Comedy Series, it might seem like just cause for series creator Armando Ianucci, who will depart his position as showrunner of the HBO comedy for its fifth season, to stick around. But Iannucci is maintaining his exit and, now, he’s happy to go out on top, as he told reporters backstage in the press room at the 2015 Emmy Awards.

“Like Italian tennis players who bow out as soon as they win the Open, I think this is a good course to follow,” Iannucci said, joined by his cast (which included a double-Emmy-fisting Julia Louis-Dreyfus). “I just felt that I took the show to where I wanted to take it, and I’m pleased to pass it on and challenge [Curb Your Enthusiasm alum] Dave Mandel to sort out the constitutional issue that we’ve dumped on his floor.”

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“I think it feels like the right time,” Iannucci continued. “Every show can benefit from new energy and new names and new ideas, and what better time to do that? So I think it feels right.”

The Veep family was also asked how it felt to finally beat Modern Family, especially given that the ABC juggernaut was about to make history with its winning streak.

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“We’ve made history by being the first time Veep has won Best Comedy,” Iannucci said, smiling.” And so in many ways, the tradition is maintained.”