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Exclusive: NBC and TV Academy drop reality host category from Primetime Emmycast

NBC and the TV Academy have decided to move the reality TV
host award out of primetime – and TV’s top reality emcees aren’t too happy about it.

Emmy nominees Tom Bergeron, Phil Keoghan, Heidi Klum, Jeff
Probst and Ryan Seacrest were just informed of the change – which means their
category will now be given out at the Creative Arts Emmys, a week before NBC’s
Aug. 29 Emmycast.

This marks the third year the reality TV host Emmy has been
handed out – but the kudo was included on the 2008 and 2009 Primetime Emmy telecast.

As a matter of fact, the 2008 nominated reality hosts (Seacrest,
Probst, Bergeron, Klum and Howie Mandel) even hosted that year’s Emmycast.

Of course, their hosting gig was widely deemed a disaster – but the star power of
the reality hosts was still considered strong enough that the category was still handed out
during the Primetime Emmys in 2009.

Probst has won the category during its first two years of

Asked about the snub, an Academy spokesman said this: “The host category was added two years ago and was never required to be in the Primetime Show.  Additionally, last year CBS let the show run 5 minutes over and there were also two no-shows for awards which opened up more time in the show. Since the Bob Hope Humanitarian Award will be presented for the first time in six years, along with the second play of the show on the West Coast beginning at 8 p.m., NBC wants us to try to get off on time and there was just no room for more awards.”  

The desire to pare down the number of awards handed out during the Primetime
Emmys – which usually number around a whopping 28 — is a perennial issue with the Emmycast.

But one insider close to a host noted that Seacrest, Probst
and company front some of TV’s most popular series – and are better known and
watched by more viewers than contenders in many of the other categories.

Sources also point out that NBC wouldn’t have much reason to object to moving the award: The Peacock isn’t represented among the nominees, now that Heidi Klum’s “Project Runway” is no longer a Bravo property.

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