Soon after ABC made “Marcus Welby, M.D.” the closer of its Tuesday night lineup in 1969, the freshman drama series proved to be one of the network’s biggest hits up to that point. It ended up being the most-Emmy-nominated program of 1970 and won the Best Drama Series award as well as acting trophies for leading man Robert Young and supporting player James Brolin. One year later, it became the first ABC property to rank as the number-one show on television.
“Marcus Welby, M.D.” starred Young and Brolin as a pair of doctors whose conflicting treatment methods formed the basis of the series’ initial plot. Both men made history with their 1970 victories, with the former becoming the oldest winner in his category at 63 and the latter becoming the youngest in his at 29. Five decades later, they have both moved to third place on their respective lists, and both land in 10th place among all of their fellow nominees. Most of the younger actors who surpassed Brolin did so before the turn of the century, as only three have joined the group in the last 20 years.
The television academy has recognized the work of supporting actors on continuing drama programs since the sixth Emmys ceremony in 1954. The award’s inaugural recipient was Dennis Weaver (“Gunsmoke”), while the most recent was Tobias Menzies (“The Crown”).
Scroll through our photo gallery to find out who ranks ahead of Brolin on the list of 10 youngest Best Drama Supporting Actor Emmy nominees.
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