January isn’t even over, but believe it or not, it’s time to start thinking about the Emmys again. The TV awards season gets underway today — you read that right, today — as the Television Academy conducts its annual lottery to schedule For Your Consideration campaign events. (The complicated lottery, which pits dozens of studios and networks opposite each other in a bid for the best dates to hold their events, is expected to continue through Friday.)
And this year, for the first time since March 2020, in-person events are making a comeback. The TV Academy didn’t hold any officially sanctioned in-person FYC events last year, keeping them all virtual, with the exception of drive-in screenings/panels. Drive-ins remain an option in 2022, and fully virtual panels will also continue to be a part of the mix. But the in-person allowance means that outlets like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video can once again potentially open their pricey pop-up FYC events spaces, while others will return to the Academy’s Wolf Theatre at its North Hollywood headquarters.
Obviously talking about live in-person events feels a bit strange at the moment, given the omicron surge and how the rise in COVID-19 cases has forced January and February events to be postponed, canceled or moved to virtual. But the hope is by March, the omicron wave will have passed and gatherings can resume with the proper precautions.
“We continue to work with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health to ensure all possible safety measures are in place when holding live, in-person events for Television Academy members,” the org said on its website, in a note directed at networks and studios. “For 2022’s FYC events, we anticipate that you may choose between holding an in-person screening and/or panel, a live-streamed event, a streaming pre-recorded event, or a drive-in screening with or without a panel. We’d recommend considering hybrid events – an in-person event that is live-streamed or recorded for VOD – to maximize member reach.”
FYC events will take place starting Monday, March 14, through Wednesday, June 15. (That’s the day before nominations-round Emmy voting, which takes place from Thursday, June 16 through Monday, June 27, begins.)
Like last year, given the sheer volume of Emmy contenders eager for an FYC slot, there can be up to four events per day — two 5 p.m. slots and two 7 p.m. slots each weeknight, plus two 2 p.m. and two 7 p.m. slots every Saturday and Sunday. But the weeknight 5 p.m. slots can only be virtual.
That’s because the Academy’s Wolf Theatre, its preferred location for Emmy FYC events, will only hold events on weeknights at 7 p.m. In-person events can also take place at outside venues for the weekday 7 p.m. slots; weekend in-person events must be held elsewhere.
Also, all attendees are required to wear face coverings (unless actively eating or drinking), and disposable face masks must be available for attendees at the Wolf Theatre. And all individuals must provide proof of vaccination, with the date of the last shot at least more than two weeks prior to the event.
At the in-person events, although food and beverage service will be allowed, it must be delivered in pre-packaged containers with minimal contact/interaction at the point of distribution. Attendees are not allowed to gather or line up for food service.
Also no longer allowed: Promotional gifts/swag may will not be distributed in 2022 “regardless of event execution,” the Academy said.
As for virtual events, refreshments in the form of delivery services like GrubHub or DoorDash are permitted, but with a $50 total value limit.
Fees for this year’s Emmy FYC events include $17,500, plus a $5,000 invite fee, for rental of the Wolf Theatre, featuring in-person talent and audience combined with a live stream for virtual viewing. Without the livestream component, in-person audience only events at the Wolf will cost $13,000 plus that $5,000 invite fee.
Meanwhile, for events produced at the Wolf Theatre but with remote talent and a virtual audience, the fee is $7,500 plus the $5,000 invite fee.
All other FYC event fees include both that $5,000 administrative/invite fee plus $2,500 for the right to live stream (a charge that is waived if the panel is produced at the Wolf Theatre). There are no longer blackout fees if the event isn’t held at the Wolf.
For the TV Academy’s FYC viewing platform (which opens in early March), screening fees start at $8,000 for comedy series, drama, series, limited/anthology series and TV movie, then dip from there, including $6,000 for competition program, structured reality program, unstructured reality program and variety talk series.
Animated program, documentary or nonfiction series, hosted nonfiction series or special and variety sketch series are $4,000 each. And at $2,000 are documentary or nonfiction program, variety special (live), variety special (pre-recorded) and the short form series categories. Individual achievement categories cost $200 to be uploaded to the TV Academy viewing platform.
An outlet’s fees are calculated based on the number of programs featured on either the Academy’s Viewing Platform, the partner’s FYC site, or the partner’s platform.
Physical screeners and mailers are now long gone from the Emmy ecosystem. Although email invites and reminders continue, the TV Academy has also discontinued the use of digital booklets that had previously been allowed to be linked from those emails. Now, the only officially sanctioned hard copy or digital booklets for promotion are via the org’s Emmy Magazine.