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The Handmaid’s Tale Takes 5

Handmaid's Tale, image,
Photo of Elizabeth Moss as Offred in the series The Handmaid's Tale courtesy of Bell Media. Click to enlarge.

(September 18, 2017 – Toronto, ON) It is the most successful almost Canadian series to win at television’s annual riot of self-congratulation, The Emmy Awards. Based on the 1985 novel by Margaret Atwood, and shot in and around Toronto with some Canadian actors and directors contributing to the story, The Handmaid’s Tale took 5 of the coveted awards last night in a show that seemed at times solely focused on America’s angst with its current President. Luckily his run is time-limited, while TV will go on forever getting better and better each year.

It was no surprise to us that Elizabeth Moss, who plays the central character of Offred in the series, would take top honours in the category Outstanding lead actress in a drama series. She was up against some remarkable talent including Claire Foy in The Crown, Evan Rachel Wood in Westworld and Viola Davis for How to Get Away With Murder. It was a bit of a surprise that The Handmaid’s Tale would win its category, Outstanding drama series against series like The Crown, Westworld, Better Call Saul and House of Cards. Then again, given that the series came to television just as the United States took a dark turn in its often troubled history, perhaps the surprise is a product of not having to live under the current malignant regime like the people who get to vote for the Emmy Awards. Margaret Atwood is a consulting producer on The Handmaid’s Tale.

Outstanding supporting actress in a drama series went to Ann Dowd, who plays the brutal Aunt Lydia in The Handmaid’s Tale. She was up against Samira Wiley who played Moira in 7 of the 10 episodes of the series. Other contenders included Thandie Newton from Westworld and Uzo Aduba in Orange Is the New Black.

The last two Emmys for The Handmaid’s Tale went to Bruce Miller for Outstanding writing for a drama series and Reed Morano for Outstanding directing for a drama series.

The Handmaid’s Tale went into the Emmy Awards with 13 nominations. No firm date for the start of Season Two has been announced.

Meanwhile, Jean-Marc Vallée picked up an Emmy for his work directing the series Big Little Lies. “This is quite an honour,” said the Quebec-born director. Big Little Lies also netted Nicole Kidman an Emmy for Outstanding lead actress in a limited series, Laura Dern took home an Emmy for Outstanding supporting actress in a limited series or movie, Alexander Skarsgard won for Outstanding supporting actor in a limited series or movie and the series itself was honoured as Outstanding limited series.