Chandra Wilson (“Grey’s Anatomy”) and Jim Parsons (“The Big Bang Theory”) will join Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Chairman-CEO John Shaffner at 5:30 a.m. on Thursday, July 16, to announce the 61st Primetime Emmy Awards Nominations.
Douglass M. Stewart, Jr. will produce the Emmy nomination ceremony at the Television Academy’s Leonard H. Goldenson Theatre in North Hollywood for the 19th consecutive year.
Chandra Wilson portrays “Dr. Miranda Bailey” on ABC’s drama “Grey’s Anatomy,” a role for which she has received three consecutive Primetime Emmy Award nominations for “Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series.” In addition, the role earned her two Screen Actors Guild Awards for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series” and “Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series;” three NAACP Image Awards; and a BET nomination.
A Texas native, Wilson began performing in musicals at age 5 with Theatre Under the Stars (TUTS), where she appeared in more than 10 of its major musical productions. At Houston’s Ensemble Theatre, she portrayed “Lil Bits” in “One Monkey Don’t Stop No Show” and, in 2005, received its Rising Star Award. After graduating from Houston’s High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, Wilson went on to acquire a drama degree from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She also spent four years training at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York.
To date, her greatest New York stage accomplishment has been her portrayal of “Bonna Willis” in the production of “The Good Times are Killing Me,” which won her a Theatre World Award for “Outstanding Debut Performance.” In 2004, she was selected by The New York Times as one of “8 to Watch, Onstage and Behind the Scenes.” This honor came in conjunction with the Broadway opening of “Caroline, or Change,” in which she played “Dotty Moffett” opposite Tonya Pinkins at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre. She was also in the Broadway productions of “Avenue Q” and “On the Town.” Other stage credits include “The Miracle Worker,” “Paper Moon: The Musical,” “The Family of Mann,” “Believing” and “Little Shop of Horrors.” This summer, she returns to Broadway in the role of “Matron Mama Morton” in the musical “Chicago.”
Wilson’s other television credits include her portrayal of “Yvonne,” a homeless woman in “Accidental Friendship” for the Hallmark Channel for which she won a PRISM Award. She was also a series regular on ABC’s “Bob Patterson,” and has made numerous guest appearances on “The Sopranos,” “Law & Order,” “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” “Sex and the City,” “Third Watch,” “100 Centre Street,” “Cosby” and “The Cosby Show.” She has also had recurring roles on “One Life to Live” and “Queens Supreme.”
Jim Parsons has quickly established himself as one of Hollywood’s breakout stars. He just wrapped season two of CBS’ critically acclaimed comedy, “The Big Bang Theory.” TV Guide’s Matt Roush raves, “There’s comic genius at work in CBS’ smartly silly sitcom hit, and its name is Jim Parsons. As Sheldon Cooper,’ a socially maladjusted Einstein, Parsons is the funniest, fussiest misfit since Felix Unger.” Additionally, USA Today’s Robert Bianco hails Parsons as “the season’s breakout comedy character.” CBS has ordered two more seasons of Warner Bros. Television’s “The Big Bang Theory,” with season three set to return this fall.
Parsons other credits include: Todd Phillips’ “School for Scoundrels,” “Heights,” “Garden State,” “Gardener of Eden,” “The Great New Wonderful,” “Judging Amy,” a guest appearance on “Ed,” “The Castle” for the Manhattan Ensemble Theater, “The Countess” for the Globe Theater, as well as “The Tempest” and “As You Like It” for the Houston Shakespeare Festival. He earned an M.F.A. from the Old Globe Theater/University of San Diego and a B.A. from the University of Houston. He currently resides in Los Angeles.
John Shaffner is serving his first term as Chairman-CEO of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. Shaffner, along with partner Joe Stewart, are among the most recognized production designers in television. He has received three Primetime Emmy Awards for David Copperfield specials, one for “The George Lopez Show” and two Daytime Emmys for “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” They have been nominated a total of 29 times for Primetime and Daytime Emmys. Shaffner-Stewart also designed sets for the series “Two and Half Men,” “Friends,” “The Drew Carey Show” and “Dharma and Greg,” among others.
Shaffner has been recognized as an Outstanding Alumnus of the University of Montana, where he earned a B.F.A. and is the recipient of the University’s School of Fine Arts Odyssey Award. He has also been recognized with the Alumni Merit Award from Carnegie Mellon University, where he received an M.F.A.
For the Television Academy, Shaffner also served as governor of the Art Directors and Set Directors Peer Group for five years, Governors’ Appointee to the Executive Committee, Second Vice Chair and Vice Chair before his election to his current position.
The 61st Primetime Emmy Awards will air on Sept. 13 (8-11 p.m. EST) on CBS and will originate from the NOKIA Theatre L.A. Live in Los Angeles. Nominating ballots will be posted on the Television Academy’s website (www.emmys.tv) on June 5; ballots are to be returned to Ernst & Young by June 26.