Few thought it would ever happen. Susan Lucci was among them. But 1999 turned out to be the year that Susan Lucci finally won her Emmy gold.
The night's big winner in terms of total number of Emmy statues won was General Hospital. The ABC soap earned top marks in the Writing and swept the acting categories---Younger Actor, Supporting Actor, and Leading Actor. For good measure, GH was also named Outstanding Drama Series. In fact, GH won eight awards in total (including three technical Emmys not presented on the telecast). This set a new Emmy record for most awards won. The Young and the Restless, however, set a record of its own: the most nominations in Daytime Emmy history with twenty-one.
Beyond the numbers, the most memorable moment of the night came near the end of the two-hour long celebration. Susan Lucci, who has played Erica Kane on All My Children for twenty-nine years, earned her very first Emmy win. She's been nominated nineteen times for the Outstanding Leading Actress award. The capacity crowd at New York City's famed Madison Square Garden leapt to its feet and gave Susan Lucci a standing ovation. Talk show host Rosie O'Donnell, who is a self-proclaimed AMC fan and has even appeared on the show on several occasions, burst into tears. Oprah Winfrey stepped from behind the backstage curtain and shouted her support to Lucci. Winfrey actually appeared on AMC in the 1980s as a television reporter. It was one of Winfrey's first acting jobs.
This was one of the most glamorous Emmy ceremonies in recent years. Soap Opera Central has been covering the awards for three years now. Gone were the gaudy gowns and men trying to be fashionable in non-formal wear. In was style, fashion, and elegance.
Joan Rivers is known for picking the best and worst dressed at many Hollywood events. If she were to skewer the Daytime Emmys, she'd be hard-pressed to find anyone who was less than beautiful.