Emmys 2020: Comedy and Drama Series Will Now Get 8 Nominees Each

TV Academy cites increase in submissions for decision

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The Television Academy on Wednesday announced new rules for the 2020 Emmy Awards in response to what it says is a 15% increase in submissions; among them, the comedy and drama series categories will now receive eight nominations each.

In addition, the Academy laid out new criteria for determining how many nominations other categories will get. In what it describes as an effort to “allow for more inclusiveness” and to make the nomination process more consistent, the number of submissions per category will determine how many nominees are ultimately selected.

If a category gets 1-19 submissions, the Academy will use a sliding scale to select between zero and four nominees. 20-80 submissions will result in five nominees. Six nominees will be selected from 81-160 submissions. Categories with 161-240 submissions will have seven nominees. And any category with more than 240 submissions will have 8 nominees.

However, the Academy said that the drama and comedy series categories will have eight nominees regardless of how many submissions they get. In addition, paired performer categories — such as Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series and Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series — will receive the same number of nominees regardless of any discrepancy in submissions.

In addition, the Academy has eliminated the “2% rule,” which set that in categories with five nominees, if the fifth and sixth top vote-getters were within 2% of each other, both would be nominated.

“The increase in submissions is a reflection of the number of new voices, new television platforms and a tremendous growth in content from existing platforms across our industry,” Academy chairman and CEO Frank Scherma said in a statement. “Despite production suspension resulting from COVID-19, there is a wealth of excellent work submitted for this year’s competition.”

For now, the 2020 Emmys are set to air in late September. Earlier this week, Jimmy Kimmel was announced as this year’s host. The Television Academy already announced it will turn the 2020 Creative Arts Emmys into a multi-night virtual event rather than a pair of physical ceremonies, and will eliminate the Governors Balls that normally take place after the Creative Arts and Primetime Emmy ceremonies.