2018 Emmy nominations predictions: Best drama actor contenders
As the nominations period comes to an end, EW’s team of experts and critics have compiled a list of the top contenders for the 2018 Emmy Awards.
For more TV talk, check out EW critic Kristen Baldwin, editor at large Lynette Rice, and editor in chief Henry Goldblatt’s witty new podcast about the Emmy Awards, Chasing Emmy. (Subscribe now via Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Stitcher, or wherever you get your podcasts.)
Sterling K. Brown, This Is Us (NBC)
Brown, 42, scored again in season 2 as perfection-seeking Randall, who attempted to better himself (and those around him) through foster care and building renovation.
Freddie Highmore, The Good Doctor (ABC)
The Good Doctor was perhaps the breakout broadcast drama of the 2017-18 season, thanks in no small part to Freddie Highmore’s portrayal of gifted Dr. Shaun Murphy.
Donald Sutherland, Trust (FX)
Christopher Plummer scored an Oscar nom for playing J. Paul Getty just months before Sutherland, 82, debuted his own take on the billionaire. But Trust offered a more nuanced portrait of Getty — and Sutherland took full advantage, showcasing his dramatic range.
Matthew Rhys, The Americans (FX)
Philip Jennings could have easily been the wet blanket of the drama’s final season — he leaves spy work behind, only to end up feeling inadequate — but Rhys, 43, modulated world-weary Philip’s simmering frustration in every scene.
Milo Ventimiglia, This Is Us (NBC)
Ventimiglia, 40, wholly embodied the emotional core of season 2: a proud father trying to face his alcoholism, repair his marriage, and save his family from literal flames — which he did, before succumbing to catastrophic cardiac arrest. Ironic, since the actor’s performance was all heart.
Jeffrey Wright, Westworld (HBO)
Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto. Season 1 ended with Wright’s robot whisperer, Bernard, realizing he was a robot himself. In season 2, the actor, 52, had the herculean task of believably portraying a mechanical being who’s struggling to determine what’s real.