LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Modern Family” won a record-tying fifth best comedy series Emmy Award and a dominant “Breaking Bad” captured the top drama award and a trio of acting honors in Monday’s ceremony, which took a somber turn as Robin Williams was remembered with restraint and grace by his longtime friend, Billy Crystal.
“He made us laugh. Hard. Every time you saw him,” Crystal said of Williams at the conclusion of a tribute to industry members who died last year. “Robin Williams, what a concept.”
Bryan Cranston was honored as best actor in a drama for “Breaking Bad,” proving that “True Detective” nominee Matthew McConaughey’s movie-star appeal couldn’t conquer all.
“I have gratitude for everything that has happened,” Cranston said. His victory ties him with four-time best drama actor champ Dennis Franz. Cranston’s co-stars Aaron Paula and Anna Gunn were honored in categories for best drama supporting acting,
“Thank you for this wonderful farewell to our show,” said “Breaking Bad” creator Vince Gilligan said of the series about a teacher-turned-drug kingpin that ended with a bang.
“The Good Wife” star Julianna Margulies won the Emmy for best lead actress in a drama series. “What a wonderful time for women on television,” Margulies said.
McConaughey was the object of too-handsome jokes by presenter Jimmy Kimmel and adoration by winner Gail Mancuso, honored as best director for an episode of “Modern Family.”
“If you don’t mind, Matthew McConaughey, I’m gonna make eye contact with you right now,” she said from the stage, making good by holding the actor’s gaze for much of her speech.
The ceremony honoring the best of TV wasn’t shy about playing the movie-star card. “Six minutes to Woody Harrelson” flashed on screen during Colin Bucksey’s acceptance speech for best miniseries direction for “Fargo.”
Harrelson and his “True Detective” co-star were given time to banter before announcing that Benedict Cumberbatch of “Sherlock: His Last Vow” was the winner of the best miniseries actor award.
“So you won Oscar, (People magazine’s) Sexiest Man Alive and now you want an Emmy, too. Isn’t that a little bit greedy?” Harrelson teased his fellow nominee.
“Fargo” was named best miniseries, and the award for best miniseries actress went to Jessica Lange of “American Horror Story: Coven.”
Buffering the miniseries awards was a parody routine about top nominees by “Weird Al” Yankovic. Musical numbers usually look out of place at the Emmys, and this one was no different. Other scripted banter fell flat, although host Seth Meyers kept soldiering on.
CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory” star Jim Parsons was crowned as best comedy series actor, giving him his fourth Emmy and putting him in league with all-time sitcom winners Kelsey Grammer and Michael J. Fox.
ABC’s “Modern Family,” which tied “Frasier” as the all-time sitcom champ with five statuettes, also captured a best comedy supporting actor trophy for Ty Burrell. Allison Janney was honored as best supporting comedy actress for CBS’ “Mom,” adding to the trophy she’d already picked up as guest actress on “Masters of Sex.”
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who received her third consecutive best comedy actress Emmy for the political comedy “Veep,” drew big laughs as she stopped to exchange faux heated kisses with Cranston, who earlier was her co-presenter and who appeared with her on “Seinfeld.”
Meyers kicked off the ceremony by tweaking his home network, NBC, and other broadcasters for being eclipsed in the awards by cable series and online newcomers like “Orange Is the New Black.”
Noting that the Emmys moved to Monday night to avoid a conflict with Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards, he said that MTV doesn’t really specialize in videos anymore.
“That’s like network TV holding an awards show and giving all the trophies to cable and Netflix. That would be crazy,” Meyers joked.
The ceremony’s traditional “in memorian” tribute to industry members who have died in the past year flashed images of stars including James Garner, Ruby Dee, Sid Caesar, Carmen Zapata and Elaine Stritch as singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles sang “Smile.” It concluded with the tribute to Williams.
Outstanding Drama Series
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Bryan Cranston, “Breaking Bad”
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Julianna Margulies, “The Good Wife”
Outstanding Writer for a Drama Series
Moira Walley-Beckett, “Ozymandias,” Breaking Bad
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Anna Gunn, “Breaking Bad”
Outstanding Directing in a Drama Series
Cary Joji Fukunaga, “True Detective”
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Aaron Paul, “Breaking Bad”
Outstanding Television Movie
“The Normal Heart”
Outstanding Miniseries or a Movie
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie
Jessica Lange, “American Horror Story: Coven”
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie
Benedict Cumberbatch, “Sherlock”
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie
Kathy Bates, “American Horror Story: Coven”
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie
Martin Freeman, “Sherlock: His Last Vow”
Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Dramatic Special
“Sherlock: His Last Vow” (Steven Moffat)
Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Dramatic Special
“Fargo” — “Buridan’s Ass” (Colin Bucksey)
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series
Joe Morton, “Scandal”
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series
Allison Janney, “Masters of Sex”
Outstanding Comedy Series
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “Veep”
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Jim Parsons, “The Big Bang Theory”
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Allison Janney, “Mom”
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
Ty Burrell, “Modern Family”
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series
Jimmy Fallon, “Saturday Night Live”
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series
Uzo Aduba, “Orange is the New Black”
Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series
“Louie” — “So Did The Fat Lady” (Louie C.K.)
Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series
“Modern Family” — “Vegas” (Gail Mancuso)
Outstanding Reality-Competition Program
“The Amazing Race”
Outstanding Structured Reality Program
Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program
Outstanding Host For A Reality Or Reality-Competition Program
Jane Lynch, “Hollywood Game Night”
Outstanding Variety Series
“The Colbert Report”
Outstanding Direction for a Variety Series
Glenn Weiss, “67th Annual Tony Awards”
Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special
“Sarah Silverman: We Are Miracles”
Outstanding Variety Special
“AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute To Mel Brooks”
Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series
“The Colbert Report”
Outstanding Directing for a Variety Series
“Saturday Night Live” — Jimmy Fallon (Don Roy King)