- Associated Press - Thursday, July 8, 2010

LOS ANGELES (AP) - “Glee,” the spunky TV musical comedy about high school misfits and the teachers who shepherd them, was a top Emmy nominee Thursday with 19 bids, including for best comedy series and stars Matthew Morrison and Lea Michele.

“I’m in such shock,” Michele said from New York.

The leading nominee was the gritty, unsparing World War II drama, “The Pacific,” with 24 nominations. But the miniseries, produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks as a companion to their acclaimed “Band of Brothers,” failed to produce the same buzz as its European theater of war predecessor.

Conan O’Brien is gone from NBC’s “The Tonight Show” but his short tenure as host is not forgotten: The late-night show with him at the helm nabbed a nomination as best variety, music or comedy series, while resurrected Jay Leno was snubbed in the category.

Don Mischer, executive producer of the Emmy Awards telecast that will air on NBC, said he wasn’t surprised by O’Brien’s nomination. The comedian exited “Tonight” after rejecting the network’s attempt to push him and the show to a post-midnight slot to make room for Leno’s return to late-night.

“Everybody understands what happened,” Mischer said. “And it was an opportunity for Emmy voters to like give him some support, you know. And he deserved it.”

David Letterman’s “Late Show” also was missing from the nominees, after a season in which the host turned an admission of affairs with female staffers and a blackmail attempt into high broadcast drama.

Out of the running for best comedy series is “Two and Half Men” as well as its star, Charlie Sheen, who’s been charged in a domestic dispute case involving his wife. The show and Sheen have routinely been nominated in past seasons.

Besides “Glee,” other newcomers receiving Emmy recognition include “Modern Family,” with nods for best comedy series and for five members of its ensemble cast _ although not linchpin Ed O’Neill as the patriarch _ and “The Good Wife,” a nominee for best drama and recognition for star Julianna Margulies.

Top categories were announced on an early Thursday telecast by Sofia Vergara of “Modern Family,” who was nominated, and Joel McHale of “Community,” who wasn’t.

“That’s all right. I phoned it in,” McHale responded when TV academy Chairman and CEO John Shaffner offered his condolences.

Vergara was stunned by her nomination.

“With this accent, it’s very hard to find roles. To have been able to find a role so perfect for a person like me with my ethnicity, with the way I look, it’s unbelievable,” she said.

The final season of “Lost” garnered nominations for best drama series and a nod for star Matthew Fox and supporting nominations for Terry O’Quinn and Michael Emerson. Elizabeth Mitchell received a guest actress bid for the drama.

The most-nominated reality series were “Dancing with the Stars” with nine bids, “The Amazing Race” with seven and “American Idol” with six.

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