With awards juggernaut "Downton Abbey" finished and "Game of Thrones" ineligible, this year's Emmys are seen as the first in years in which any show could take home the most prestigious statuettes.
There will be fierce competition among a host of acclaimed first-timers, including HBO sci-fi Western show "Westworld," Hulu's dystopian "The Handmaid's Tale" and Netflix's 1980s-set horror series "Stranger Things."
The three series already have a huge 13 statuettes between them from last weekend's Creative Arts Emmys, which recognize behind-the-scenes talent as well as guest acting appearances.
"What's probably going to come out is that the awards will be spread across everybody. I think everyone's going to be happy," Debra Birnbaum, executive editor of television for Variety magazine, told AFP.
The glitzy ceremony in downtown Los Angeles -- the first under the administration of President Donald Trump -- is expected to have a distinctly political flavor, with host Stephen Colbert likely not to pull his punches.
NBC's long-running comedy sketch show "Saturday Night Live" received 22 nominations -- the joint-highest total alongside "Westworld" -- after a year of mercilessly spoofing the new commander-in-chief.
Its haul of five Creative Arts statuettes included outstanding guest actress in a comedy series for Melissa McCarthy, whose "Unhinged Spicey" take on embattled White House press secretary Sean Spicer came to embody early criticism of the administration.
The show is in the running for five more gongs at the main ceremony, with Alec Baldwin and Kate McKinnon nominated for their turns as Trump and campaign rival Hillary Clinton.