New Emmy Date: How Long Is Too Long to Wait for This Year’s Telecast?

It was business as usual this past weekend at the Los Angeles Area Emmy Awards, as local newscasts and programs from the likes of Telemundo’s KVEA and public broadcaster KCET were recognized. But that’s an exception to this year’s Emmy scramble. As the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes potentially spill into the fall, it’s still unclear how or when the Primetime Emmys — or the Daytime Emmys, which have been on hold since June — will take place.

As this year’s broadcast partner, Fox ultimately must decide when the 75th Primetime Emmys will actually air. And the feeling inside the network is that it should be January. As we’ve previously reported, the TV Academy would prefer an earlier date, like November, and I have to agree there. January feels too far in the distance, and it would also put it in the middle of film and guild awards season — which includes more recent eligibility windows.

Should the Emmys wind up in January 2024, it would have to navigate a calendar that already includes the Golden Globes (still without a TV partner, but that’s a different topic for another day) on Jan. 7 and the Critics Choice Awards on Jan. 14. And that’s where things get confusing: Because the current Emmy eligibility window is June 1, 2022, to May 31, 2023, whereas those other awards shows’ window would be Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2023, you might be recognizing different seasons of the same show at the same time.

In other words, the cast of Hulu’s “Only Murders in the Building” might be celebrating the show’s Season 3 at the Globes and the Critics Choice Awards … and then attending an Emmy ceremony the next week to recognize the show’s Season 2. And “The Bear” star Jeremy Allen White might win a Globe for Season 2 of “The Bear,” and then a few weeks later win an Emmy for Season 1 of “The Bear.” I worry about how stale the wins might feel at that point, especially for the series and episodes that aired way back in summer or fall 2022. (Of course, given that there seems to be no end date to these strikes anytime soon, perhaps January is now the safer option.)

At the very least, it was good to see the TV Academy keep the Phase 2 FYC and voting window locked in August. Yes, it will make our jobs in the press harder as we cover an Emmy campaign with no access to the nominated stars. But we found a way to get creative during the COVID-19 pandemic, when access was also limited, and we’ll figure it out again. More importantly, keeping the calendar the same prevents any complaints that a time shift might unfairly benefit some nominees and damage the chances for other hopefuls.

I do feel for both TV academies as they continue to play the wait-and-see game. Over at the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences in New York, where they’ve been sitting on Daytime Emmy winner results for several months, the clock is ticking. The Daytime Emmys should have taken place in June, and as the strikes continue, the postponement is coming up against other awards that NATAS administers, including the News & Doc Emmys (September) and the new Children’s & Family Emmys (December). And as the year draws to a close, NATAS is having to prepare for next year’s Daytime Emmys … before this year’s ceremony even takes place.

NATAS CEO Adam Sharp says he had hoped to move the Daytime Emmys to October, but that window is closing fast: “Even if the white smoke comes up tomorrow that all things are resolved, it will take some period of time to secure a new space, reconfigure the set for that space and do everything to actually pull it off. We think there is still some window there in the mid fall. But it’s narrowing. And it’s concerning.”

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