One of the guest stars on Veep who just got nominated for an Emmy might be violating a new Television Academy rule.
Veep guest star Peter MacNicol is nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series for his role as Jeff Kane. MacNicol appeared in five episodes of the season and is technically not part of the main cast, so by all accounts his nomination in the guest category sounds right in theory.
However, the Television Academy introduced a new rule in 2015 that should disqualify MacNicol from this category completely. The rule reads as follows: "A performer may elect to submit in the 'Guest Actor,' 'Supporting Actor' or 'Lead Actor' category. However, if the performer appears in 50% or more of the episodes eligible for a given Primetime competition, then the performer is not eligible to submit in the 'Guest performer' category."
This rule continues into the 2016 Emmys, and as such, MacNicol should not have been able to submit as a guest star. The actor appeared in five episodes out of 10 - which is 50 percent - thereby making him ineligible.
It is unclear if there was an oversight in submitting or within the Television Academy itself, or if one or more of the episodes MacNicol was in do not count for whatever reason.
This Emmy rule prevented guest stars like Margo Martindale in The Good Wife or Cherry Jones in Transparent from submitting in the guest categories this year. Even though both actresses are Emmy favorites, neither was able to get into their respective Supporting Actress categories, which are traditionally more competitive.
It remains to be seen if the Television Academy will rescind MacNicol's nomination for Guest Actor in a Comedy Series. There is some precedent with major award shows rescinding nominations. At the Oscars last year, the song "Alone, Yet Not Alone" from the movie of the same name was nominated but then disqualified after it was discovered that one of the song's writers (who was a former governor and current music branch executive committee member) unfairly campaigned to voters.
The 2016 Primetime Emmys will air Sunday, Sept. 18 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.