The Television Academy has unveiled a slew of rules changes for the 2020 Emmy Awards including adjustments for ‘hanging episodes’, alterations to kids voting and extra assessments for self-published series.
The Board of Governors has approved more than a dozen changes to the rules.
Hanging episodes, those episodes currently outside the current year’s eligibility, will now be eligible if they are broadcast or posted on a member-accessible platform, including the network’s streaming platform or the Television Academy’s own platform in their final form by May 31, 2020. In recent years, series including Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale, won even though the majority of episodes aired in 2018.
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However, this does not apply to the limited series category, where all episodes of the show must be broadcast, streamed or aired on the Television Academy’s own platform by May 31, 2020 to qualify. If the limited series has episodes that air after this date, the whole series must enter the next year.
As previously announced, the Academy is eliminating DVD screeners for the 2020 Emmys in order to save “millions” of dollars and eliminate waste.
Elsewhere, all self-published programming, including short-form, will be vetted to determine if the show is “suitably competitive” to be nominated. In the kids’ categories, only experts in the genre, the Children’s Programming and Animation Peer Group voting members, will be allowed to vote.
There is a limit on actors playing the same character in more than one series.
The Informational Series or Special category, which was won by Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown in 2019, has been retitled the Hosted Nonfiction Series or Special category to give focus to personality-driven documentaries and travelogues.
Programs first broadcast during primetime hours that are an extension of or a special produced from a daytime series are now only eligible in the Daytime Emmy competition.
There are also revised category descriptions for Outstanding Structured Reality and Outstanding Unstructured Reality Programs, streamlined Interactive Programming categories, Makeup and Hairstyling categories, and Sound Mixing and Technical Direction categories as well as restructured entry fees.
Finally, after nearly 40 years at Television Academy and oversight of 39 Emmy Awards, Senior Vice President of Awards John Leverence will retire at the end of the year. He will continue to serve as an awards consultant for the 2020 Emmy Awards season, while the Awards department has also merged with the Membership department, led by veteran Television Academy staffer, Julie Shore.
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