8th Primetime Emmy Awards
DateMarch 17, 1956
LocationPan Pacific Auditorium, Los Angeles, California
Presented byAcademy of Television Arts and Sciences
Hosted byArt Linkletter
John Charles Daly
Most awardsThe Phil Silvers Show
Producers' Showcase (4)
Most nominationsProducers' Showcase (12)
Best Comedy SeriesThe Phil Silvers Show
Best Dramatic SeriesProducers' Showcase
Best Variety SeriesThe Ed Sullivan Show
Television/radio coverage

The 8th Emmy Awards, later referred to as the 8th Primetime Emmy Awards, were held on March 17, 1956, to honor the best in television of the year. The ceremony was held at the Pan Pacific Auditorium in Hollywood, California and was hosted by Art Linkletter and John Charles Daly. All nominations are listed, with winners in bold and series' networks are in parentheses.

The top shows of the night were The Phil Silvers Show, and Producers' Showcase. Each show won a record four major awards. Producers' Showcase, with its twelve major nominations, became the first show to receive over ten major nominations. (Both of these records were subsequently passed by multiple shows).

Winners and nominees



Best Comedy Series Best Dramatic Series
Best Variety Series Best Audience Participation Series (Quiz, Panel, Etc.)
Best Action or Adventure Series Best Children's Series
Best Documentary Program Best Special Event or News Program
Best Music Series Best Contribution to Daytime Programming
Best Single Program of the Year
  • Producers' Showcase, (Episode: "Peter Pan"), (NBC)
    • Disneyland, (Episode: "Davy Crocket and the River Pirates"), (ABC)
    • Ford Star Jubilee, (Episode: "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial"), (CBS)
    • Make Room for Daddy, (Episode: "Peter Pan Meets Rusty Williams"), (ABC)
    • Producers' Showcase, (Episode: "The Sleeping Beauty"), (NBC)
    • The United States Steel Hour, (Episode: "No Time for Sergeants"), (CBS)
    • Wide Wide World (Episode: "The American West"), (NBC)


Lead performances

Best Actor in a Continuing Performance Best Actress in a Continuing Performance

Supporting performances

Best Actor in a Supporting Role Best Actress in a Supporting Role
  • Nanette Fabray as Various characters on Caesar's Hour, (NBC)
    • Ann B. Davis as Charmaine Schultz on The Bob Cummings Show, (Episode: "Schultzy's Dream World"), (CBS)
    • Jean Hagen as Margaret Williams on Make Room for Daddy, (ABC)
    • Audrey Meadows as Alice Kramden on The Honeymooners, (CBS)
    • Thelma Ritter as Aggie Hurley on Goodyear Television Playhouse, (Episode: "The Catered Affair"), (NBC)

Single performances

Best Actor in a Single Performance Best Actress in a Single Performance
  • Lloyd Nolan as Capt. Queeg on Ford Star Jubilee, (Episode: "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial"), (CBS)
    • Ralph Bellamy as The Father on The United States Steel Hour, (Episode: "The Fearful Decision"), (CBS)
    • José Ferrer as Cyrano on Producers' Showcase, (Episode: "Cyrano de Bergerac"), (NBC)
    • Everett Sloane as The President on Kraft Television Theatre, (Episode: "Patterns"), (NBC)
    • Barry Sullivan as Defense Attorney Greenwald on Ford Star Jubilee, (Episode: "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial"), (CBS)


Best Director for a Film Series Best Director for a Live Series


Best Producer for a Film Series Best Producer for a Live Series
  • Walt Disney for Disneyland, (ABC)
    • James D. Fonda for You Are There, (CBS)
    • Paul Henning for The Bob Cummings Show, (CBS)
    • Nat Hiken for The Phil Silvers Show, (CBS)
    • Frank LaTourette for Medic, (NBC)


Best Comedy Writing Best Original Teleplay Writing
Best Television Adaptation
  • Paul Gregory, Franklin Schaffner, for Ford Star Jubilee, (Episode: "The Cain Mutiny Court Martial"), (CBS)
    • David Dortort, for The 20th Century Fox Hour, (Episode: "The Ox-Bow Incident"), (CBS)
    • John Monks, for The 20th Century Fox Hour, (Episode: "Miracle on 34th Street"), (CBS)
    • Rod Serling, for Climax!, (Episode: "The Champion"), (CBS)
    • David Shaw for Producers' Showcase, (Episode: Our Town"), (NBC)

Best Specialty Act - Single or Group

Best Specialty Act - Single or Group[2][3]

Most major nominations

By network [note 1]
By program

Most major awards

By network [note 1]
By program
  1. ^ a b "Major" constitutes the categories listed above: Program, Acting, Directing, and Writing. Does not include the technical categories.