More than four decades after Winkler was first nominated for a Primetime Emmy for his portrayal of Arthur “The Fonz” Fonzarelli on “Happy Days,” he won the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series gong for his role of Gene Cousineau on “Barry.”
“I only have 37 seconds, I wrote this 43 years ago,” Winkler quipped after audience members gave him a standing ovation as he walked to the stage.
He then quoted something that Hollywood attorney Skip Brittenham once told him:
“If you stay at the table long enough, the chips come to you and tonight I got to clear the table.”
“I was 27 when I started doing ‘The Fonz.’ I’m now 72 and I’m standing right here in front of you with her (the Emmy statuette). Wow,” Winkler said later during a backstage press conference.
Winkler, 72, also enjoyed a “Happy Days” reunion with co-star and now-director Ron Howard:
Howard tweeted that Winkler’s win was “a great moment.”
Winkler, meanwhile, said it was “thrilling.”
Winkler fended off competition from Brian Tyree Henry (“Atlanta”), Alec Baldwin and Kenan Thompson (both “Saturday Night Live), Tituss Burgess (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”), Louie Anderson (Baskets) and Tony Shalhoub (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”) to win the award.
He was nominated for Primetime Emmy in 1976, 1977 and 1978 for his role as “The Fonz,” in 1979 for the informational program “Who Are The DeBolts?” and in 2000 for “The Practice.” Winkler won a Daytime Emmy in 1995 for Outstanding Children’s Special and in 2005 for Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program.
Check out more of his backstage reaction here: