Julie Bowen and Claire Danes
John Shearer/Invision/AP; Kevin Winter/Getty
09/23/2012 at 11:30 PM EDT
Although Mad Men
and American Horror Story
led the race with 17 nominations each
, the casts of Modern Family
and Game Change
are the ones who will be really celebrating after Sunday's 64th Primetime Emmy Awards.
Eric Stonestreet took home the first award of the night for outstanding supporting actor in a comedy, setting the tone for the rest of the evening. In a repeat of last year's early Emmys sweep for the series, Julie Bowen
took home the best supporting actress award, marking her second consecutive win in the category, followed by the show's co-creator Steve Levitan winning the Emmy for outstanding comedy direction. The cast closed out the evening the same way it began, with another win, this time for outstanding comedy series.
had an incredible night following the show's debut season. The Showtime series' star Damian Lewis won the Emmy for the lead actor in a drama series – while his pregnant costar Claire Danes
scooped up the best actress award. Homeland
also took home the Emmys for outstanding writing and outstanding drama series.
After playing Sarah Palin in HBO's Game Change
, Julianne Moore won her first Primetime Emmy for lead actress in a miniseries or movie. "I feel so validated because Sarah Palin gave me a big thumbs down," she said as she accepted her award. The political film – which won four awards total – also took home honors for outstanding writing, outstanding directing and outstanding miniseries or movie.
Two and Half Men
's Jon Cryer won the Emmy for outstanding lead actor in a comedy. "Don't panic people, something has clearly gone terribly wrong. I am stunned, I didn't actually win this – this did not just happen!" Cryer said, addressing his fellow nominees Don Cheadle, Louis C.K., Jim Parsons, Larry David and Alec Baldwin. Meanwhile, Julia Louis-Dreyfus
took home the Emmy for outstanding lead actress in a comedy.
's Aaron Paul was stunned as he accepted his Emmy for outstanding supporting actor in a drama series. "I cannot believe I'm standing on this stage, let alone in this room," he said. But before stepping down from the stage, the actor thanked his fiancée Lauren Parsekian
. "You saved me," he said.
's Maggie Smith won the Emmy for outstanding supporting actress in a drama series, beating out Archie Panjabi, Anna Gunn, Joanne Froggatt, Christina Hendricks and Christine Baranksi, but wasn't present to accept.
While accepting the Emmy for outstanding variety series, Jon Stewart earned first-to-get-bleeped
honors after winning his 10th consecutive Emmy for The Daily Show With Jon Stewart.
And Jessica Lange stunned in red as she accepted the Emmy for outstanding supporting actress in a miniseries or movie for her role as Constance Langdon in American Horror Story
, while Kevin Costner took home the Emmy for outstanding lead actor in the same category for his role in Hatfields and McCoys