Emmys Producers Confirm Virtual Ceremony This Year

“We’re not going to be asking you to come to the Microsoft Theatre in downtown LA on September 20th,” reads a letter sent to nominees

Host Jimmy Kimmel and the other executive producers of the 2020 Emmys have confirmed that next month’s ceremony will go virtual in a letter to some of the nominees.

“As ABC and the TV Academy continue to formulate plans for the Emmys telecast, producers have taken the proactive step of reaching out to some nominees now to inform them of our intent to deliver a live show that is both celebratory and safe,” a spokesperson said. “We look forward to sharing information with you in the weeks ahead, as we solidify our plans for TV’s biggest night.”

The decision comes a day after the nominees were announced in a remote ceremony hosted by “Saturday Night Live” alum Leslie Jones, Laverne Cox, Josh Gad and Tatiana Maslany.

The letter, the text of which was first published in Variety, informs the nominees that producers will be hiring a team of technicians, producers and writers to film them at home “or another location of your choice.”

“We’re going to make you look fabulous – we’re exploring the cutting edge of technology to allow to use good cameras and lighting and look forward to working with you to produce your unique “on screen” moments,” the producers said.

The Primetime Emmys are just the latest awards ceremony to go virtual amid the coronavirus pandemic, following the series of Daytime Emmy Awards ceremonies, as well as the BET Awards last month. The new format comes after the 71st Emmy Awards drew 6.9 million total viewers on Fox last year, marking a 33% year-over-year decline and the lowest-rated broadcast in the ceremony’s history.

Read the full letter below.

Dear Nominees,
The producers of Emmys 2020 congratulate you on this incredible recognition of your work.

We’re delighted and honored to be producing the event on September 20th and have every intention of not only making sure that it is not compromised by this crazy moment in our lives, but that it is the most memorable Emmys ever and that you have a wonderful night. As you’ve probably guessed, we’re not going to be asking you to come to the Microsoft Theatre in downtown LA on September 20th. This year, it’s still going to be TV industry’s biggest night out… but we’ll come to you!

At a time like this, we’re taking the opportunity to create a moment that is more relaxed, more entertaining, more enjoyable not only for you, but for the millions watching at home. It’s still television’s highest honor, and we never want to lose the significance of being nominated for, and maybe winning, an Emmy, but we’re going to do in a way that is appropriate to the moment (and guarantees you a memorable night).

But we cannot ignore the circumstances, and aside from NOT being able to come together in one place, we also acknowledge that our world is going through a challenging moment in many ways. We’ll be producing an event that is filled with warmth and humanity, which celebrates the power of television to bring us together and to help us shape our world. You are an essential part of that story.So, what does this all mean for September 20th?

We are assembling a top notch team of technicians, producers and writers to work closely with Jimmy Kimmel and with you and your team, to make sure that we can film with you (and loved ones or whomever else you choose to be with) at your home, or another location of your choice. We’re going to make you look fabulous – we’re exploring the cutting edge of technology to allow to use good cameras and lighting and look forward to working with you to produce your unique “on screen” moments.

So, what are you wearing??? Our informal theme for the night is “come as you are, but make an effort!”

If you want to be in formal wear, we’d love that, but equally if you’re in the UK and it’s 3am, perhaps you want to be in designer pajamas and record from your bed! We want to work with you to style your moments, but want you to guide us on your levels of comfort – where you want to be, who you want to be with, what you want to wear etc.

In the forthcoming days, Jen Proctor, our Talent Producer and her extraordinary team at Cultivated Entertainment will be reaching out to you to start talking through the details.

Once again, congratulations.

With respect and admiration,
Jimmy Kimmel, Ian Stewart, Reggie Hudlin, Guy Carrington and David Jammy
Executive Producers, 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards

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