Gwyneth Paltrow, Justin Timberlake Receive Creative Arts Emmys

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Everyone loves an awards show, but surely the creative arts Emmys wouldn’t reside next to the Oscars or the Grammys. Would they?

Next weekend sees the latest installment of the Emmys, where the great and the good compete to be recognized in the extremely important medium that is television. Typically, what happens is that the nominations get announced, and then Mad Men wins.

But an appetizer has just taken place: the Creative Arts Emmy Awards, where NewsFeed’s favorite celebs (note to other celebs reading this: we love you just the same, it’s merely a turn of phrase) Gwyneth Paltrow and Justin Timberlake walked away with TV comedy series guest-star honors.

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And when we say, “walked away,” we mean, the prizes were collected on their behalf. Paltrow won for her (far more entertaining than it had any right to be) turn as substitute teacher Holly Holiday on Glee. “She couldn’t be here because it’s happy hour at the Starlight Room,” presenter Alison Brie quipped about Paltrow’s absence.

The scarily talented Timberlake received his Creative Arts Emmy for hosting an episode of Saturday Night Live and shared another for co-writing the opening monologue (the one in which he sings about not wanting to sing). “Justin Timberlake really wanted to be here but we said ‘no, they want to see the writers,’” SNL head writer Seth Myers told the audience.

Aside from individuals, the big winner of the evening was HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, which won seven gongs, more than anyone or anything else for the likes of art direction, picture editing and makeup. HBO (which, like TIME, is part of Time Warner) won 15 Emmys in total, besting all its competitors.

And while the fired Two and a Half Men star Charlie Sheen was being “roasted” nearby on Comedy Central, his former co-star Jon Cryer and series creator Chuck Lorre got some zingers in. Lorre relayed that he’d been urged to share any amusing stories and asked Cryer if he had “any amusing anecdotes?” Cryer replied, “Uh, none that amuses me.” As for Lorre, he was “drawing a blank.”

Speaking of zingers, Howie Mandel looked ahead to next week’s Emmy Awards, commenting that, “This is great. These are the Creative Emmys. Unlike the Emmys next week, where there’s no creativity at all.” (via Huffington Post)

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Glen Levy is an Executive Producer at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @glenjl. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.