Emmy Award-winning Best Performances in a 2010s Miniseries, Ranked

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The miniseries format has grown exponentially in recent years. With FX series like american horror story and American crime historythe Primetime Emmys The exceptional limited series category, as we know it today, produced its fair share of award-winning performances. Actors and actresses from the limited series have been qualified to be nominated for the role of lead actor/actress or supporting actor/actress in a limited series.



From miniseries based on books to those based on historical events, the lead and supporting actors/actresses have had their work cut to provide a reasonable take on the original. Many of the best performances come from shows produced by streaming services on HBO Max or Hulu. The American crime history The series, which airs on FX and now Hulu, holds the most wins among limited series and has produced numerous Emmy-winning performances. Let’s take a closer look at some of the best Emmy-winning miniseries performances of the 2010s, ranked.

8 Sarah Paulson – The People v. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story (2016)

Sarah Paulson is no stranger to working both in the american horror story and American crime history series. She starred in all seasons of the first and two of the second. Her role as Marcia Clark in The People v. OJ Simpson was arguably his best throughout both series. Marcia Clark was the main persecutor of the life-size trial and Paulson’s performance was undoubtedly a respectful nod to the big woman.

Related: Emmy Award-Winning Best Performances In A 2010s Drama Series, Ranked

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seven Darren Criss — The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story (2018)

Darren Criss is a man of many talents. From singing to acting, the versatile actor gives his all in every role he plays. In the second season of American crime history – entitled The Assassination of Gianni Versace – he played serial killer, Andrew Cunanan, who murdered famous designer Gianni Versace among other men. Criss’ portrayal throughout the series has given viewers a better understanding of some of Cunanan’s background. Whether or not the killer deserves sympathy, Criss’ performance illuminated the mind behind the murders.

6 Sterling K. Brown – The People v. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story (2016)

American crime history has not only won many Emmys as a whole, but has also produced many great performances. In the first season, Sterling K. Brown portrayed Christopher Darden in such a way that he won Best Supporting Actor in a Limited Series. Alongside Paulson’s Marcia Clark, Darden also served on the prosecution team for the OJ Simpson trial. Unlike Clark, however, Darden felt torn between honoring the black community and his job.

5 Frances McDormand—Olive Kitteridge (2015)

As one of the most ornate limited series on this list, Olive Kitteridgeit should come as no surprise that Frances McDormandThe performance of as the titular character should be featured. It’s not easy to play a less empathetic and more strict tough woman. That’s exactly what McDormand had to do for his role. Divided into four parts, the show covers Olive’s 25-year struggle with depression, grief, jealousy and family friction – all of which are strong emotions to deal with.


4 Riz Ahmed – The Night of (2017)

In one of the most underrated limited series, The night ofactor Rice Ahmad plays Naz Khan, a man accused of murdering a young woman. After spending the night partying with the young woman, he wakes up to find her horribly stabbed to death. The series reviews the events leading up to the murder, after the murder, and while he is in prison for the crime. Ahmed’s portrayal of the shy student through it all is phenomenal in how viewers can watch him grow as he faces it all.

Related: 8 Award-Worthy TV Performances To Watch For This Emmys Season

3 Laura Dern – Big Little Lies (2017)

Laura Dern is one of the best actresses of her time, but her role as Renata Klein in big little lies must be one of his best. For her role, she had to play the “top bitch”, have mental breakdowns and panics, and then play a friend and mother who brought it all together in a limited series. For her expertise in this area, she won Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series, even beating out a few of her castmates.


2 Patricia Arquette — The Law (2019)

Adaptations of true events seem to be a common denominator for limited series, which is the case for the Hulu adaptation of the Blanchard family, in The act. As indicated by TIMEthe Blanchard family is famous for the murder of an overprotective mother whose insistence on her daughter’s fake illness kept the girl locked up for most of her young life. Patricia Arquette played the mother, Dee Dee Blanchard, so well that she won Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series for her portrayal.

1 Jessica Lange – American Horror Story: Coven (2014)

Jessica Lange is another actress who dated the first seasons of american horror story. While all of her roles were outstanding to watch, she won Best Lead Actress for her portrayal of Fiona Goode in American Horror Story: Coven. Fiona is the Sorceress Supreme, a head witch who is the most powerful of the clan. She is also obsessed with her appearance and staying young and powerful, which leads to estranged relationships and even her own demise.

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