Television Academy Expands Short-Form Categories


HOLLYWOOD: Three short-form categories have been added to the Primetime Emmy Awards, giving more opportunities for programs averaging 15 minutes or less in length.

Outstanding short-form series – comedy or drama replaces the short format live entertainment category. Outstanding short-form series – variety is a new addition. Outstanding short-form series – reality/nonfiction replaces the short format nonfiction category. There are also new categories for performers in short-form series: comedy or drama actor and comedy or drama actress. Continuing in the short-form genre is outstanding short-form animated program.

The expansion in short-form awards categories comes on the heels of the Academy’s announcement last month that it will hold its Creative Arts Emmy Awards ceremony over two consecutive nights, both of which will take place the weekend prior to the Emmy Awards telecast. The expanded short-form categories will be presented as part of the Creative Arts Emmy Awards ceremonies.

Additionally, the Television Academy’s Board of Governors has approved several other Primetime Emmy Awards rules and procedures changes for 2016. These changes include an increase in the number of nominations (from five to six) for directing and writing in both comedy and drama series to reflect the dramatic increase in series production.

Bruce Rosenblum, the Television Academy’s chairman and CEO, said, “Our industry is aggressively, quickly and creatively evolving the various ways episodic stories are told. Our Board of Governors felt that this expansion of short-form categories begins the process of ensuring that Emmy-worthy creativity will be rewarded, irrespective of format or platform. These category changes reflect the broader opportunities that emerging networks and distribution platforms, such as Maker Studios, Fullscreen, Crackle, AwesomenessTV, YouTube Red, Adult Swim and others, are seizing in choosing innovative formats that enable our television community to share stories in novel and entertaining ways.”

Rosenblum added, “The Television Academy is committed to annually assessing the Emmy Award competition to ensure it reflects the dynamic and exciting growth happening within our industry. The changes we are making better align award categories with the various genres of outstanding programming today, recognize the substantial increase in eligible submissions, and streamline the online voting process for our 18,000-plus voting members.”