Leslie Odom Jr. has been flirting with EGOT in recent years, but hasn’t quite gotten there yet. But he could get one step closer to that elite status with a Best Comedy Guest Actor win for “Abbott Elementary.”
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Odom’s journey to EGOT started with Broadway’s “Hamilton.” That musical alone got him halfway there. He claimed the Grammy for Best Musical Theater Album as a principal vocalist on the show’s cast recording. Then he won the Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical. That just leaves the Emmy and Oscar — easier said than done, of course, but Odom has already received nominations for both.
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He picked up Oscar nominations for Best Supporting Actor and Best Original Song for his work in Regina King‘s feature directing debut “One Night in Miami” (2020). He was actually the front-runner in our odds to win the songwriting prize for his composition “Speak Now,” but he was bested in an upset by H.E.R.‘s “Fight for You” from “Judas and the Black Messiah.” He lost the acting prize to the same film as well: that award went to “Judas” star Daniel Kaluuya.
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And so far Odom has gotten a trio of Emmy noms. First came a bid in 2020 for Best Character Voice-Over Performance for the Apple TV+ musical comedy “Central Park.” Then when Disney+ aired a recorded version of the “Hamilton” stage musical he was nominated for Best Movie/Limited Actor in 2021. Most recently he contended for Best Variety Special (Live) in 2022 or hosting “The Tony Awards Present: Broadway’s Back,” which celebrated the reopening of theaters after COVID closures crippled the industry.
Now he could get another chance at TV’s top prize thanks to “Abbott Elementary,” where he guested this season as Draemond, a former “Abbott” student who returns in the hopes of turning it into a charter school. As of this writing we rank him sixth with 23/2 odds based on the combined predictions of thousands of Gold Derby users. He’ll have to get past front-runner Nathan Lane, who’s the defending champ for “Only Murders in the Building,” but last year’s Emmy win for “Abbott” supporting actress Sheryl Lee Ralph shows that the TV academy’s actors branch supports the show. Can Odom win and cross off the third award on his EGOT to-do list?
PREDICTthe 2023 Emmy nominees through July 12
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