Melissa Leo ("Louie" and "The Butler"): Yes, Leo was squarely a television actress, from her start in "All My Children" to an incredible run on "Homicide: Life on the Street." But she has had to battle sexism for years, even after (if not especially after) proving herself as ball-busting homicide detective Kay Howard. While she proved herself compelling in the indie film "Frozen River" (2008), she was revelatory to audiences as the blowsy South Boston sister Alice Ward in "The Fighter."
The latter finally broke a dam of offers, and Leo has been working overtime in both mediums. And while there's no official tally of sex acts that warrant Emmy nominations, Leo as a blind date debating oral sex reciprocity and sexual double-standards with Louis C.K. is a highlight like no other, and definitely worthy of a Guest Actress nod. "I was even more prepared than I would be for Shakespeare with his dialogue," Leo declared to New York magazine, and added, "I have worked for 30 years and won an Academy Award. I have never had a response like that to anything. Personally, on the street, people come up to me about that episode. It's a phenomenon!"
Next up, with likely no lines about sexual gratification, is her role as Mamie Eisenhower in "The Butler" (which, as mentioned earlier, may change its title). Meanwhile, here's another trailer from the Lee Daniels picture.