Emmys Due for Tune-Up as Bruce Rosenblum Nears Re-Election Day

TV Academy vote to take place Nov. 21

With the deadline to enter the race for Television Academy chairman a week away, it appears that the job remains Bruce Rosenblum’s for the taking.

Rosenblum plans to run for a second term as Academy chairman and CEO, reports Deadline, news that should come as little surprise even if Rosenblum’s work address has changed from Warner Bros. to Legendary Entertainment. (No official comment came from Rosenblum or representatives of the Academy.)

Rosenblum’s initial term at the Academy’s wheel has been free of controversy and generally well received, so that even if another candidate were to enter the race — and none is necessarily expected to — that person would have a hard time forming a platform that would unseat the incumbent.

The TV Academy appears on a steady course of evolution — as evidenced by the mission of newly hired prexy-COO Lucy Hood — designed to keep the organization vibrant and fairminded in a complicated smallscreen universe. Rosenblum said at the outset of his term that relevance to membership was a key goal, and the numerous ongoing Academy-sponsored endeavors support that.

While not a gamechanger for his hopes come the Nov. 21 vote by the Academy’s Board of Governors, the most vexing challenge for Rosenblum might be the Academy’s main event, the Primetime Emmys.

Though operating in fairly steady-as-she-goes fashion, you can detect an undercurrent of dissatisfaction that the Emmys don’t quite know what to do in a world teeming with conventional and unconventional programming. The need to accommodate everything from miniseries to web shorties has left the annual primetime broadcast bursting at the seams and the catch-all Creative Arts Emmys ballooning into a ceremony that now approaches four hours in length.

To some extent, the Academy is justified in throwing up its hands and saying that the three-hour primetime broadcast limits its options as far as manipulating categories, but the other side of the coin is that this year, that broadcast did use its time efficiently, with its determination to also be an entertainment show giving it cover to put forth scripted bits of dubious merit.

Whoever the next chairman of the Academy is (be it Rosenblum or an unexpected rival) it might be time for some bolder moves with the Emmys. It’s not a matter of blowing it up and starting over, but some creative thinking — befitting the excellence of the industry the Academy celebrates — toward a more satisfying kudofest is probably in order.

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