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Orange Is the New Black Stars Talk Emmys Day Prep, Lori Petty's Return and the Show's Impact on Society

Lorraine Toussaint, Michael J. Harney Michael Kovac/Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Orange Is the New Black isn't just a wildly entertaining series—it's also a means for raising awareness about a breadth of issues, ranging from ageism to sexism to homophobia.

Stars Lorraine Toussaint, who plays the villainous Vee, and Michael Harney, who stars as the compassionate Sam Healy, are both keenly aware of the impact the show has had on society and feel extremely grateful to be apart of such an important series.

"I'm so proud," Toussaint told E! News at the 2014 Entertainment Weekly pre-Emmy party in Los Angeles last night. "I'm proud to be a part of the show because it's changing the face of television. It's addressing…so many different issues. And that's what media is meant to do."

Likewise, Harney shared similar sentiments, explaining "that social consciousness is extremely important with Orange, predominately because we're dealing with a marginalized community." 

PHOTOS: Orange Is the New Black cast in and out of costume

"It's really a great lesson in compassion," he said of the show's ability to make viewers connect with the inmates. "I think it's a great lesson in empathy. And I think underneath the dress of the show is this wonderful movement, soulful movement, that will go on for quite some time. Even after the show is done—which I don't think will be for a long time, I hope!"

When it comes to Emmys day, both Toussaint and Harney could not be more excited. The erstwhile Weeds star will be spending the morning with his son, whom he called his "good luck charm" while the 54-year-old beauty is hoping to find time for a little pampering.

"Feeding, making scrambled eggs for my daughter…walking the dog, picking up the poop," she dished on her pre-Emmy morning. "Maybe a massage, that would be nice, a manicure would be nice—I hope I can squeeze that in."

While Harney will return for season 3, Toussaint's fate is still uncertain, and when asked if Vee will be back, the thesp took a lengthy pause before she smiled and said, "Possibly could be, could be not." 

MORE: The most heartbreaking moments from OITNB

Lori Petty, Orange is the New Black Jessica Miglio for Netflix

The talented co-stars also gushed over Lori Petty's recently announced return for the forthcoming season, with Toussaint calling the news, "fabulous" and "very cool."

"Oh she's wonderful," Harney said with a smile. "I am very excited about that. She's a wonderful actress. Very meaningful and very committed, very dedicated to being in the moment."

Come Monday, Orange Is the New Black will be vying against some stiff competition, including The Big Bang Theory, Louis, Modern Family, Silicon Valley and Veep for the highly coveted Best Comedy Series Emmy award.

"I think it has an excellent chance," Toussaint said as she beamed with pride when asked if she believes the Netflix series will take home the prestigious accolade. "I think our actors have an excellent chance. I think we've really taken the media by storm and we're deserving of it."

Additional celebs at the star-studded bash included Kerry Washington, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Eric Stonestreet, Ryan Murphy, Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting and hubby Ryan, Cat Deeley, Aaron Paul and wife Lauren, Uzo Aduba, Laura Prepon, Minnie Driver, Bellamy Young, Taryn Manning and many more. 

PHOTOS: 2014 Emmys: Notable Nominees

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