Sarah Palin is definitely a candidate ... for an Emmy
While Sarah Palin is busy touring America, she might want to plan a stop in Hollywood in September. While political pundits speculate about whether she'll seek the Republican nomination for president in 2012, she may potentially receive an Emmy nomination next month. She's an executive producer of her controversial series "Sarah Palin's Alaska," which the TLC network has entered for consideration in four categories: cinematography, picture editing, music composition and best reality program.
It's not the first time politics and entertainment have mixed at Hollywood awards. Minnesota's U.S. Sen. Al Franken is a five-time Emmy winner: four as a writer and producer of "Saturday Night Live" and another for writing "The Paul Simon Special" in 1978. Jerry Springer was the mayor of Cincinnati (1977-1978) before becoming better known for his infamous daytime talk show, but the only major showbiz award he won was a Razzie Award as worst new star for the 1998 film "Ringmaster." And, of course, Arnold Schwarzenegger was the star of the "Terminator" films and many others before serving as governor of California. In 2004, he won a Razzie as "worst Razzie loser of our first 25 years."
If Palin is nominated for her series -- in which she guides the viewer on a tour through her home state -- it won't be her first brush with Emmy, and it may not be her last. Tina Fey won an Emmy two years ago for spoofing the ex-governor on "Saturday Night Live." And HBO is currently in production of a film adaptation of the book "Game Change," which chronicled the 2008 presidential election. It stars four-time Oscar nominee Julianne Moore as Palin and reunites the writer and director of "Recount," which won best TV movie in 2008 and earned a supporting-actress nod for Laura Dern as another controversial politico: Florida Secretary of State Katharine Harris.
An Emmy nomination for Palin would break new ground, but another entertainment award frequently honors politicians: the Grammys, which have bestowed best spoken word album honors to three presidents (Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama), as well as to now-Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton in 1997, who won for "It Takes a Village."
-- Tom O'Neil