EXCLUSIVE: A reliable source just told me that this year’s Emmy hosts are going to be all 5 nominees in the Reality Host category. So that means: Tom Bergeron of ABC’s Dancing With the Stars, Heidi Klum of Bravo’s Project Runway, Howie Mandel of NBC’s Deal or No Deal, Jeff Probst of CBS’ Survivor, and Ryan Seacrest of Fox’s American Idol. This was the first year reality TV hosts were eligible for an Emmy Award now that a category recognizing “outstanding host for a reality or reality-competition program” was created by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. The award recognizes that reality TV has become “an integral part of television and our culture,” John Shaffner, chairman and CEO of the TV academy, said in a statement in April announcing the new honor. Eligibility was open to hosts of programs entered in the reality program and reality-competition categories. So clearly this Emmy hosting gig is a sop. (It’s been pointed out to me that these are all AFTRA shows and AFTRA hosts. Is this Big Media giving the finger to SAG?)
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