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Who Will Win the Emmy for Best Reality Competition? Nigel Lythgoe Picks Between His "Children"

Nigel Lythgoe Mathew Imaging/Getty Images

"It's a bit like deciding which child gets the sweets!"

So says American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance executive producer Nigel Lythgoe when we asked him which of his two über-popular shows he wants to win the Outstanding Reality-Competition Program Emmy on Sept. 18.

Still, the time must come to hand the sweets over to one while the other sulks in the corner. So which show will Nigel be rooting for on Emmy night? Nigel has made his choice:

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"I guess I would prefer American Idol because it's been around for so long and it's so deserving of an Emmy."

Including this year, Idol has been nominated for the big award nine times now but has never won. That's right—Idol is basically the Susan Lucci of reality-TV shows. Blasphemy!

"You could sort of say it may be because the voters believe that it has such huge success, it doesn't need to win. It's got the viewers," Nigel says. "It's very nice to be nominated, but we'd much prefer to win."

Nigel believes this might be Idol's last chance at a trophy. "I do believe that if American Idol doesn't win the Emmy this year, it probably never will." He credits the show's enduring success in its 10th year "against all odds" as a reason he'd be "surprised" to see Idol overlooked at the big dance.

Don't fret, SYTYCD fans, Nigel is hoping your fave show is showered with some Emmy lovin', too. He tells us he would love for the show's host to go home with the award for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program. "I certainly don't mind Cat Deeley beating Ryan Seacrest to even the score," he says. "I think both she and Ryan are the best in the business. I think they both justly deserved that nomination. It's a bit like the finale of SYTYCD this year. I really don't mind which one of the two of them wins as long as one of the two of them wins."

For our money, an Emmy win for Seacrest is also a long time coming. He won a daytime Emmy in 2006, hosted the Emmy ceremony in 2007 and his show Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution won last year, but Ryan has yet to win for hosting the ratings blockbuster that is Idol.

What do you think, reality-TV junkies? Would you like to see Idol win the award for Outstanding Reality-Competition program? And who do you think should take home the prize for Outstanding Host—Cat or Ryan?

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