Daytime Emmys: TV Academy Clarifies Eligibility, Adds Young Adult Category

The National Academy of TV Arts and Sciences is looking to clarify the difference between “daytime” and “primetime” Emmy eligibility. As part of a new set of Daytime Emmys rules announced on Thursday, primetime offshoots of daytime programs will now compete in the Daytime Emmy Awards.

“A broadcast series considered eligible for daytime may submit any episode in to the Daytime Emmy Awards contest whether that episode premiered in primetime or daytime hours,” the new rule reads. “An episode or special from a series premiering in primetime hours must enter the Daytime Emmys.”

That means, for example, if a “Sesame Street” special aired in primetime, it will still be directed to Daytime Emmy consideration. In the past, that special would have entered the Primetime Emmys, but that show will no longer accept those entries, a NATAS spokesperson said.

Variety previously revealed that NATAS planned to merge its young actor and young actress categories into a single, gender-neutral younger performer award, and had also clarified its policy allowing performers in gendered categories to enter the one they felt best suited their identity.

NATAS revealed the rest of its Daytime Emmy changes as part of its call for entries. Early entries are due Dec. 18, while final deadline is Jan. 15. New categories established for the 47th Daytime Emmys in 2020 include outstanding young adult program (including both series and specials). The definition of “young adult” in this category is defined as “content created for tween and teen viewers 12-17 years old.” Children’s and family viewing performer and craft categories will now also allow entries from young adult programming.

A new limited performance in a daytime program category will focus on performers from non-dramas who appear onscreen for 25% or less of a program or season, while leading performances will compete in a re-named principal performance in a daytime program category.

The outstanding performer in a children’s or family viewing program category has been eliminated and replaced with outstanding principal performance in a children’s, family viewing, young adult, or special class program, and outstanding limited performance in a children’s, family viewing, young adult program, or special class program. (Once again, “limited” is defined as “appearing in 25% or less of the total episodes for the season, appearing on screen in 25% or less of the entire special, and/or onscreen guest credit.”)

Categories outright cut include outstanding musical performance in a daytime program. Also new this year are outstanding picture editing for an animated program and outstanding special effects costumes, makeup and hairstyling categories.

Among other changes:

• The following categories are now open to both broadcast dramas and digital drama entrants: Outstanding art direction/set direction/scenic design for a drama or digital drama series; casting for a drama or digital drama series; costume design for a drama or a digital drama series; lighting direction for a drama or digital drama series; multiple camera editing for a drama or digital drama series; music direction and composition for a drama or a digital drama series.

• Outstanding writing for special class has been eliminated and replaced by outstanding writing for a special class series and outstanding writing for a special class special.

• Outstanding makeup, outstanding costumes and outstanding hairstyling reels must now include only “everyday” makeup and hairstyling. Special event, Halloween, special effects, prosthetic or period makeup and hairstyling reels belong in the newly created outstanding special effects costumes, makeup and hairstyling category. Shows are eligible to enter all makeup, costumes and hairstyling categories simultaneously.

• Special class short format programming has been re-defined as a maximum of “approximately 15 minutes and a minimum of 2 minutes” in runtime. Digital drama series is now defined as “programs with a minimum of 5 or more episodes each with an average minimum of 10 minutes runtime or more.” Those with an average runtime of less than 10 minutes who were previously eligible in the category of Outstanding digital daytime drama series are grandfathered into the same category if they choose to enter there. New programs with less than five episodes and with shorter runtimes will be encouraged to enter short format.

• NATAS is no longer providing nomination certificates for free. Certificates and upgraded plaques will be available on the awards purchasing site.

• As previously reported, a combined outstanding younger performer in a drama series category replaces outstanding younger actor and younger actress in a drama series categories as well as eliminates the gender of the category. And all performers eligible for gendered acting categories are encouraged to enter the one they feel best fits their gender identity.

“The changes we have instituted for this year’s Daytime Emmy Awards reflect the increasing diversity of the programs and individuals honored, as well as that of daytime television’s many fans,” said NATAS president/CEO Adam Sharp. “Our Academy is determined to remain on the forefront of inclusiveness in our industry and we’re grateful to GLAAD and other organizations and voices who give their time and wisdom to help shape our competitions.”

The 47th Daytime Emmy Awards will take place at the Pasadena Convention Center in Pasadena, Calif., on June 12, June 13 and June 14.

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