Over four seasons of Showtime’s “Episodes,” Matt LeBlanc has played a heightened version of himself: The show’s “Matt LeBlanc” is an arrogant, ridiculous, borderline jackass. He’s been recognized for the effort. LeBlanc’s current Emmy nomination for best lead actor in a comedy is his fourth for “Episodes.” He was also nominated three times for his work on “Friends.”
The through-line between the two series is executive producer David Crane, who created “Friends” with Marta Kaufman and “Episodes” with Jeffrey Klarik.
“I’ve been working with them for so long,” LeBlanc told TheWrap. “We have a long enough relationship that he knows that if I’ve got an idea, I’ve thought about it before I send it to him.”
LeBlanc spoke to TheWrap about who his toughest Emmy competition is, who in his category got snubbed, and when he expects “Episodes” to end.
What is the part of being nominated that you enjoy the most?
It’s a long time, so you kind of forget. For me, the most exciting part is the writers getting nominated again. Without them, I wouldn’t have a shot at it. You can only polish a turd so far. We have gems for scripts and it’s an honor to say those words.
How long do you think “Episodes” can go?
We’re going to do one more. Back to work in April. I think that may be the end of it. No one’s contract is past that.
Would you consider doing more seasons?
Probably, if David and Jeffrey wanted to do more. It feels like five years is the right number for that show. But if they wanted to do more, and the network and the cast — it’s hard to keep a cast together for nine episodes every year and a half, because it’s not the kind of money that someone can live on. I can live on it, sure, but actors want to work more than that. You can’t really ask someone for exclusivity for that amount of episodes spread out that far. So there’s a lot of hurdles to making the show. But we get it done.
Do you know yet how the show will end?
I don’t. They’re brainstorming now. I don’t get involved with it. If I have an idea, I’ll pitch it to them. If they like it, they’ll run with it. If they don’t, they won’t.
Who is your toughest competition in your category?
I would imagine it’s going to go to Jeffrey Tambor. That’s a pretty flashy role, and he’s been brilliant in everything he’s done his whole career. I think he deserves one. If I had to bet money on it, I would probably bet money on him.
If you win, are there any naysayers you would want to rub the award in the face of?
Nah. Winning will do that all on its own.
Aside from your show, was there anyone you thought was snubbed this year, who should have been nominated by wasn’t?
I think it’s a little odd that Jim Parsons didn’t even get nominated. He not only gets nominated, he wins it every year. So for him to not even get nominated, I don’t understand it.
If you win, and could pick a song to play while you walk up to the stage, what would that song be?
“Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey — or “Crazy Train.” One of those two.