Phoebe Waller-Bridge Interrupts Julia Louis-Dreyfus Winning Streak To Take Home Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Emmy Award

British comedy Fleabag received eleven 2019 Primetime Emmy nominations after only two seasons including Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series and Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series.

Creator, writer, and star of the show, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, received her first Emmy nominations this year for her standout work on the series and wasn’t expected to win among fierce competition.

However, the talented actress pulled an Emmy upset to end forerunner Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ historic streak, by winning Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge Emmys
Phoebe Waller-Bridge | Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Julia Louis-Dreyfus looked to get her ninth Emmy win

In 1995, Louis-Dreyfus took home her first Primetime Emmy out of a total of six Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series nominations for her unforgettable performance as Elaine Benes on Seinfeld.

She then starred as the main character in The New Adventures of Old Christine in 2006, for which she received five nominations for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, only winning one.

A couple of years after the series ended, Louis-Dreyfus landed another lead role in HBO comedy, Veep, as Selina Meyer where she racked up six Emmys in a row for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, making history as the only actress to accomplish this feat.

If the talented actress had won the Emmy, she would have broken Cloris Leachman’s record, which she’s currently tied with at eight wins.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge won Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Emmy

Waller-Bridge created, wrote, and stars in the British comedy-drama Fleabag, which revolves around a young, angry, confused, and sexually avid woman of the same name who lives in London.

In the show, Fleabag “breaks the fourth wall” and talks directly to the camera to the viewers. After premiering in 2016, the show has received several accolades including eleven 2019 Primetime Emmy Awards.

While the series took home Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series, Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing for a Comedy Series, and Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series, Waller-Bridge herself won Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series.

Including Louis-Dreyfus, she also beat out Rachel Brosnahan (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel), Christina Applegate (Dead to Me), Catherine O’Hara (Schitt’s Creek) and Natasha Lyonne (Russian Doll) to snag the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Emmy award.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s Emmy speech

The talented actress initially accepted her award in shock, and then regained her composure, saying,

“Thank you. I find acting really hard and really painful. Thank you to be nominated with these unbelievable actresses who I’ve looked up to and watched and laughed with for so many years; it means so much. I mean that in a nice way. And this means a huge amount to me. Huge thanks again; the Fleabag gang, there they are, thank you so much. I’m so supported on the show. As Harry said, it’s sickening how much we all love each other. I’m so supported by this wonderful cast. A big shout-out to my acting agent, who has been rooting for me literally from the beginning. Thank you, Amazon, BBC, thank you for doing this. I’m going to start repeating myself. Thank you. Oh, my God.”

Fleabag concluded its Emmy-award winning series in April 2019. However, it is still available to watch in its entirety on Amazon Video.