Yeardley Smith, Sebastian Maniscalco on the Future of Podcasting at iHeart Radio Podcast Awards

The 2020 iHeartRadio Podcast Awards showed the range of people making their way into the booming audio industry as comedians and actors such as Sebastian Maniscalco, Roselyn Sanchez and husband Eric Winter, and Yeardley Smith attended the show, each promoting their own podcast.

Smith, the popular voice actor best recognized for her 31-year stint as Lisa Simpson, shared her thoughts on the future of the industry before stepping inside to present the award for best comedy podcast alongside comedian and “The Irishman” actor Maniscalco.

“Podcasting is really like a throwback to the old radio shows, so everything old is new again in so many ways. I really think the fact of the matter is that everybody loves stories. I don’t think there’s any place that podcasts can’t go,” she said.

“I think it’s [podcasting] growing leaps and bounds,” said Maniscalco, there promoting his podcast “The Pete and Sebastian Show.” “Now, we’re seeing video has been really important. People are now filming their podcasts, putting them up on YouTube. Some people like to actually see people talk, which is mind boggling to me because you’re just watching people talk. There’s nothing really going on. It’s crazy how it’s grown over the last 10 years.”

The self-proclaimed unseasoned actor recently appeared in Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman,” which is nominated for 10 Academy Awards this year. With two of his legendary co-stars Al Pacino and Joe Pesci up for best supporting actor, the comedian said he hopes to see Pesci take home the Oscar.

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“Two great performances, I really love Joe Pesci and what he did and Al Pacino did a great job, too. I don’t know if you could say one did better than the other, but I’m a big Joe Pesci fan,” he shared. “I’d like to see him win just because he hasn’t done a movie in a while and he came out and did this one and he knocked it out of the park. So it would be kind of fitting for him to win.”

The iHeartRadio Theater was packed with attendees and nominees as Will Ferrell opened the hour-long ceremony with a monologue professing his love for Burbank. He also jokingly took credit for the creation of Apple. Gavin DeGraw, a co-host featured on the “How Men Think” podcast, lit up the stage as he performed a medley of his songs, including hit song “Not Over You.”

With numerous well known actors and comedians jumping to join the podcast world, many might think the sheer star power of their name drives popularity and accolades, but this year’s Podcast awards kept the stars in check in a couple categories. “Disgraceland,” a music podcast ran by Jake Brennan, won the category on Friday night, shutting out T.I.‘s latest venture “Expeditiously.”

The Breakfast Club” took home the award for best pop culture podcast for a second consecutive year. The trio also presented the podcast of the year award to “The Dropout.”

View the complete list of winners below:

Podcast of the Year:

“The Dropout” (ABC News)

Icon Award – Innovator Award, Presented by Zoom:

“Life Kit” (NPR)

Icon Award – Audible Audio Pioneer Award:

Donald Albright & Payne Lindsey (Tenderfoot TV)

Icon Award – Social Impact Award:

“1619” (The New York Times)

Best Crime Podcast:

“Man in the Window” (L.A. Times/Wondery)

Best Pop Culture Podcast:

The Breakfast Club” (iHeartRadio)

Best Music Podcast:

“Disgraceland” (iHeartRadio)

Best News Podcast:

“The Daily” (The New York Times)

Best Sports & Recreation Podcast:

“30 For 30” (ESPN)

Best Comedy Podcast:

“Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend” (Team Coco & Earwolf)

Best Political Podcast:

“Pod Save the People” (Crooked Media)

Best Branded Podcast:

“Songland” (NBC)

Best Kids & Family Podcast:

“Story Pirates” (Gimlet)

Best Food Podcast:

“The Dave Chang Show” (The Ringer & Majordomo Media)

Best Fiction Podcast:

“Blackout” (Endeavor Audio & QCODE)

Best Beauty & Fashion Podcast:

“Forever35” (Independent)

Best Overall Host – Female:

Nora McInerny (American Public Media)

Best Overall Host – Male:

Aaron Mahnke (Lore)

Best Business & Finance Podcast:

“How I Built This with Guy Raz” (NPR)

Best Green Podcast:

“Drilled” (Critical Frequency)

Best Travel Podcast:

“Overheard at National Geographic” (National Geographic)

Best Spirituality & Religion Podcast:

“On Being with Krista Tippett” (On Being Studios)

Best Advice / Inspirational Podcast:

“Why Won’t You Date Me? With Nicole Byer” (HeadGum)

Best TV & Film Podcast:

“How Did This Get Made?” (Earwolf)

Best Spanish-Language Podcast:

“Radio Ambulante” (NPR)

Best Ad Read Podcast:

“Conan O’ Brien Needs A Friend” (Team Coco & Earwolf)

Best Science Podcast:

“Hidden Brain” (NPR)

Best Technology Podcast:

“Reply All” (Gimlet)

Best Wellness & Fitness Podcast:

“Where Should We Begin? with Esther Perel” (Esther Perel Global Media/Gimlet)

Best History Podcast:

“Revisionist History” (Pushkin Industries)

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