Broadcast TV Critics kudofest comes during Emmy nom season

In the run up to the Oscars, there are numerous other honors and awards shows — critics groups, the Golden Globes, guild prizes. Their number seems to increase by the year, leading to an annual call to move the Academy Awards to an earlier date so the Oscars don’t feel like an afterthought.

The lead-up to the Emmys, however, isn’t nearly as crowded. As summer arrives, the Globes are a distant memory and the Television Critics Assn. awards are a low-key, casual affair, held after Emmy noms are announced.

Enter the Broadcast Television Journalists Assn. An offshoot of the Broadcast Film Critics Assn, the BTJA will hold its inaugural awards show today at the Beverly Hills Hotel. In addition to lunch, the group will serve up 15 awards in comedy, drama, reality and talkshow categories.

The group ostensibly exists to help provide access for its broadcast journalists, who include roughly 55 charter members covering television full time for broadcast and Internet outlets. But, judging from the parent movie group’s 17-year history, it’s the awards show that has the potential to give members increased clout within the industry.

“To have people who watch television professionally help Emmy voters focus on quality shows can be really useful,” says BTJA acting president Joey Berlin. “And from a network perspective, it’s a great opportunity to champion their programs.”

The group has positioned itself within the calendar to win Emmy voters’ attention. Emmy nomination ballots are due July 8, 18 days after the BTJA awards show. The scheduling mirrors the Broadcast Film Critics’ timing of handing out honors while Oscar nom ballots are out to Academy members.

“Television’s a big landscape, bigger than film, so I think the group can be helpful for Emmy voters,” says TV Guide senior editor William Keck. “You look at some of the nominees — ‘Archer’ for best comedy or Eden Sher (“The Middle”) and Busy Philipps (“Cougar Town”) in the acting categories – — and there’s some fresh faces that hopefully might spill over with the Emmys.”

For series, the BTJA nominates 10 shows in the comedy, drama and reality categories. The acting nominees follow the traditional lead and supporting categories, with reality programming including three categories — reality program, reality competition program and host. There are also awards for talkshow and most exciting new series, recognizing programs set to premiere this season.

Berlin says the group has “been welcomed with open arms” by the industry. Network execs contacted for this report appeared a bit more circumspect, some appreciating the group’s arrival as a “valuable promotional vehicle,” others lamenting the appearance of “yet another awards show.”

“They’re trying to make it a splashier version of the TCA awards,” says a high-level network communications executive. “There’s even some overlap in membership. It seems redundant.”

That might appear true, says AP senior entertainment producer Mike Cidoni Lennox, a member of both groups. But he points out that the timing of the BTJA awards represent a crucial difference.

“They’re similar groups, but the TCA Awards come too late in the game to have an impact,” Lennox says. “My hope is that here we can nominate some breakout names that aren’t the usual suspects. We’ve already had some lively discussions, and I think it will make for a lively show.”

That show will be broadcast by cable and satellite network ReelzChannel two days after the fact, with VH1.com live-streaming the show. Cat Deeley (“So You Think You Can Dance”) will host.

If the fledgling show is a success, it might eventually become more ambitious, like its movie counterpart.

“We’re following that model in a lot of ways,” Berlin says. “It seemed like there was a gap, and we’re more than happy to try to fill it. So far, everything has exceeded our expectations.”

AND THE NOMINEES ARE:

DRAMA SERIES
“Boardwalk Empire” (HBO)
“Dexter” (Showtime)
“Friday Night Lights” (DirecTV)
“Fringe” (Fox)
“Game of Thrones” (HBO)
“The Good Wife” (CBS)
“Justified” (FX)
“The Killing” (AMC)
“Mad Men” (AMC)
“The Walking Dead” (AMC)

ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES
Steve Buscemi for “Boardwalk Empire”
Kyle Chandler for “Friday Night Lights”
Michael C. Hall for “Dexter”
Jon Hamm for “Mad Men”
William H. Macy for “Shameless” (Showtime)
Timothy Olyphant for “Justified”

ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES
Connie Britton for “Friday Night Lights”
Mireille Enos for “The Killing”
Julianna Margulies for “The Good Wife”
“Elisabeth Moss for “Mad Men”
Katey Sagal for “Sons of Anarchy” (FX)
Anna Torv for “Fringe”

SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A DRAMA
Alan Cumming for “The Good Wife”
Walton Goggins for “Justified”
Shawn Hatosy for “Southland” (TNT), John Noble for “Fringe”
Michael Pitt for “Boardwalk Empire”
John Slattery for “Mad Men”

SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A DRAMA
Michelle Forbes for “The Killing”
Christina Hendricks for “Mad Men”
Margo Martindale for “Justified”
Kelly Macdonald for “Boardwalk Empire”
Archie Penjabi for “The Good Wife”
Chloe Sevigny for “Big Love” (HBO)

COMEDY SERIES
“Archer” (FX)
“The Big Bang Theory” (CBS)
“Community” (NBC)
“Glee” (Fox)
“Louie” (FX)
“The Middle” (ABC)
“Modern Family” (ABC)
“The Office” (NBC)
“Parks and Recreation” (NBC)
“30 Rock” (NBC)

ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES
Alec Baldwin for “30 Rock”
Steve Carell for “The Office”
Louis C.K. for “Louie”
Charlie Day for “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” (FX), Joel McHale for “Community”
Jim Parsons for “The Big Bang Theory”

ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES
Courtney Cox for “Cougar Town” (ABC)
Edie Falco for “Nurse Jackie” (Showtime)
Tina Fey for “30 Rock”
Patricia Heaton for “The Middle”
Martha Plimpton for “Raising Hope” (Fox)
Amy Poehler for “Parks and Recreation”

SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES
Ty Burrell for “Modern Family”
Ed O’Neil for “Modern Family”
Neil Patrick Harris for “How I Met Your Mother” (CBS)
Nick Offerman for “Parks and Recreation”
Danny Pudi for “Community”
Eric Stonestreet for “Modern Family”

SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES
Julie Bowen for “Modern Family”
Jane Krakowski for “30 Rock”
Jane Lynch for “Glee”
Busy Philipps for “Cougar Town”
Eden Sher for “The Middle.”
Sofia Vergara for “Modern Family”

TALK SHOW
“Chelsea Lately” (E!)
“The Daily Show” (Comedy Central)
“The Ellen DeGeneres Show” (Warner Bros.)
“Jimmy Kimmel Live!” (ABC)
“The Oprah Winfrey Show” (Harpo)

REALITY SERIES
“Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (ABC)
“Hoarders” (A&E)
“The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” (Bravo)
“Sister Wives” (TLC)
“Undercover Boss” (CBS)

REALITY SERIES — COMPETITION
“The Amazing Race” (ABC)
“American Idol” (Fox)
“Dancing With the Stars” (ABC)
“Project Runway” (Lifetime)
“RuPaul’s Drag Race” (Logo)
“Top Chef” (Bravo)

REALITY SHOW HOST
Tom Bergeron for “Dancing With the Stars”
Cat Deeley for “So You Think You Can Dance” (Fox)
Ty Pennington for “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition”
Mike Rowe for “Dirty Jobs” (Discovery)
Ryan Seacrest for “American Idol”

NEW SERIES HONOREES
• “Alcatraz” – FOX – Warner Bros.
• “Apartment 23″ – ABC – 20th Century Fox
• “Awake” – NBC – 20th Century Fox
• “Falling Skies” – TNT – DreamWorks
• “New Girl” – FOX – 20th Century Fox
• “Ringer” – CW -Warner Bros
• “Smash” – NBC – DreamWorks/Universal Media
• “Terra Nova” – FOX – 20th Century Fox


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