Saturday, January 17, 2009

The Award Winning Entourage

Many have made the observation that there is no other industry so eager to give themselves awards than Hollywood. And it is true that there are plenty of awards that TV shows, movies and actors and actresses can win if they have a high quality of entertainment to offer the public and they excel above the pack of competition in excellence in their art.

But a TV show or movie really does not just set out to win awards. If the awards reflect that they are doing a good job of touching their audience and entertaining the people that tune in or come to the theater, that is the real value of what artists strive to do in their performances and the behind the scenes work that goes into making great shows. For the HBO comedy, Entourage, they have had success in both arenas.

The show is a hit not just because the critics like it and it has gotten some serious nods from the awards committees. The show is a hit because the fans love it and watch it religiously episode after episode. That is what makes a difference to the producers of Entourage. And that is what makes a difference to HBO and to the talented performers that make the show happen each episode.

The many awards that Entourage has won only go to reinforce formally what the fans have already said which is that they love the show and it not only is a lot of fun to watch but it is quality entertainment. The Hollywood community has then made that judgment official with many awards that line the offices of the producers of the show. Some of the most notable awards Entourage has received include.

. The 2007 Emmy Awards handed Entourage five nominations including Outstanding Comedy Series, Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series to Kevin Dillon who plays Johnnie and Outstanding Guest Actor for a Comedy Series to Martin Landau and Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series.

. In that same Emmy season, Jeremy Piven won an Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.

. A 2008 Golden Globe award again to Jeremy Piven for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television.

. Two additional Golden Globe nominations in 2008. One was to Kevin Dillon for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television. The other was for Best Television Series - Musical or Comedy.

. Two nominations from the Screen Actors Guild in 2008. One was again to Jeremy Piven for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series. The second nomination was for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series.

This is an impressive list of awards and the show is really just getting a head of steam. Moving into its fifth year, the characters are fresh and the audience is growing each year if not each episode. And that last fact about the success of Entourage is no doubt what really matters to HBO and to the producers of the show.

To HBO and those charged with using the success of Entourage to generate revenue, awards do help a lot because they give credibility to what fans are saying about Entourage through their loyalty. HBO has a proud tradition of producing quality new shows which took it from just being a network that replayed movies to becoming a real network and a force in creative television. Awards like those that we just reviewed give HBO that "cred" it wants as a creative force that is just as worthy of consideration as the major networks.

Similarly, for the creative minds that make Entourage happen including the producers, writers and performers, awards look great on their resume. Even though none of the lead actors and actresses in Entourage are going to have any trouble getting work, awards lead to more roles in major movies or other prime television spots. And for performers, the real reward of doing good work is the chance to do more good work. We just hope that nobody associated with Entourage feels the urge to go seek other work too soon. We want to see this award winning comedy have a long and successful run for many years to come.

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