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Coronavirus Pandemic Spurs Virtual Edition of Emmy Awards 2020

September 18, 2020, 11.06 PM

LOS ANGELES, – The Emmy Awards 2020 is going virtual in the age of the coronavirus pandemic.

Producers are scrambling to create Hollywood’s first major pandemic-era awards show as global Covid-19 cases are well over 30 million.

The coronavirus pandemic has turned Tinseltown upside down causing productions to stop on its tracks even as worldwide stay-at-home orders triggered massive binge-watching sprees.

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Now late-night funnyman Jimmy Kimmel will host the 72nd Emmys live on Sunday from an empty theater in Los Angeles — which remains under strict lockdown — with winners beaming in from the safety of their homes due to Covid-19.

Adding to the unpredictability on a night of firsts, 130-odd nominees who were sent cameras to hook up in their own living rooms have been encouraged to get creative with their speeches (and comfortable — A-listers are invited to trade gowns and tuxedos for pajamas).

"Ratings have been flagging for award shows for years... This is, if nothing else, an opportunity to mix things up, to do an award ceremony in a way unlike any other that's been done," said IndieWire TV awards editor Libby Hill.

"Even if Sunday night is a complete disaster, it's at least going to be an interesting disaster. And that's really all you ask for in 2020."

Capturing this year's somewhat anarchic zeitgeist, "Watchmen" leads the charge with a whopping 26 nominations, primarily in the limited series categories.

The eerily prescient comic book adaptation that debuted last October confronts historic US racism, police violence and even mask-wearing. It also wowed critics and audiences alike.

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"'Watchmen' speaks so specifically in so many unprecedented ways to the moment in which we're living right now," said Hill.

"I think people will probably get pretty tired of hearing Watchmen's name getting called... it's as much of a lock as we have right now."

'Last chance'

With HBO's record-breaking Emmys juggernaut "Game of Thrones" having finally mounted a dragon and soared off to Westeros, the awards in the drama series categories promise to be more fiercely contested this year.


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