There is fierce jockeying for Emmy nominations in the drama and comedy series categories, with newcomers "True Detective" and "Orange is the New Black" making strategic moves to boost their chances.
The nominations were to be announced early Thursday by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences by Mindy Kaling and Carson Daly.
HBO's critically acclaimed "True Detective" has the trappings of a miniseries, with its closed-ended story and movie-star leads Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, who have said they don't plan on returning for a second small-screen season. The series, though, is expected to return with a new cast.
But the crime anthology qualifies as a series because of the "created by" credit given to Nic Pizzolatto by the Writers Guild of America, said John Leverence, the TV academy's senior vice president for awards.
That could spell trouble for the competition, including the final season of "Breaking Bad" and leading man Bryan Cranston. Besides the AMC drama, others aiming for Emmy glory include NBC's "The Blacklist" and Showtime's "Masters of Sex."
Those competitors represent traditional TV, whether broadcast or cable. Online intruders also are lining up, led by last year's breakthrough nominee, political drama "House of Cards," and "Orange is the New Black." Both are from Netflix.
The latter, a prison-set series that's considered a hybrid "dramedy," is competing for a best comedy series nomination and lead comedy series actress bid for star Taylor Schilling.
Another such hybrid, Showtime's dysfunctional family saga "Shameless," is attempting a rare category leap. The Showtime series and its star were seeking comedy instead of drama nods, which would put them in contention with likely nominee "Modern Family," a four-time Emmy winner as best comedy.
The 66th Primetime Emmy Awards will air Monday, Aug. 25, on NBC, with emcee Seth Meyers, the former "Saturday Night Live" player and new NBC late-night host. The ceremony, traditionally held on Sunday, was moved to avoid a conflict with NBC's "Sunday Night Football" and with MTV's Video Music Awards. The VMAs will take place the night before the Emmys.