'The Normal Heart' sweeps the board at Emmy nominations

matt-bomer1-mark-ruffalo-the-normal-heart-hboThis year's Emmy nominations were announced earlier this afternoon (July 10) - and The Normal Heart has swept the board. The HBO film, based on Larry Kramer's classic play of the same name, earns a total of 16 nominations - including six for its star-studded cast. Mark Ruffalo, Matt Bomer, Julia Roberts, Jim Parsons, Joe Mantello and Alfred Molina are all recognised for their performances in the acclaimed adaptation from Glee/American Horror Story creator Ryan Murphy. Murphy receives nominations for both his writing and directing, while the film faces stiff competition in the Best Movie or Mini-Series category from Murphy's FX show American Horror Story: Coven, and the BBC's Sherlock. The Normal Heart is the third most-nominated production at this year's awards - behind Game of Thrones, which earns 19 nominations, and Fargo, which receives 18. Meanwhile, LGBT activist Laverne Cox is nominated for Best Guest Actress in a Comedy for her performance as trans prisoner Sophia Burset in Orange Is the New Black. Cox's nomination is one of 12 received by the hit Netflix comedy-drama. Modern Family also picks up multiple nominations, including one for Jessie Tyler Ferguson's performance as gay dad Mitchell, and five members of the American Horror Story: Coven cast are nominated: Jessica Lange, Angela Bassett, Kathy Bates, Sarah Paulson and Frances Conroy. ITV's Downton Abbey performs impressively too, notching up 12 nominations including one for Dame Maggie Smith's scene-stealing performance as the Dowager Countess. Other actors recognised in this year's nominations include Kevin Spacey for House of Cards, Helena Bonham Carter for Burton and Taylor, Dame Diana Rigg for Game of Thrones and Jane Fonda for The Newsroom. The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony broadcast live on US network NBC on August 25.