Chris Jackson/Getty Images
Chris Jackson/Getty Images
YouTube stars are getting closer than ever to winning Emmys for their acting skills.
The Television Academy announced Wednesday new changes coming to the 2016 Emmys ceremony. Among them are five new categories honoring short form videos. Potential entrants are defined as "series with a minimum of six episodes running an average of 15 minutes or less per episode, exhibited over-the-air and/or via cable, satellite or Internet," according to the group.
"These category changes reflect the broader opportunities that emerging networks and distribution platforms, such as Maker Studios, Fullscreen, Crackle, AwesomenessTV, YouTube Red, Adult Swim and others, are seizing in choosing innovative formats that enable our television community to share stories in novel and entertaining ways," Bruce Rosenblum, Television Academy chairman and CEO, said in a statement.
The five new categories are Outstanding Actor in a Short Form Series – Comedy or Drama, Outstanding Actress in a Short Form Series – Comedy or Drama, Outstanding Short Form Series – Comedy or Drama—which replaces Short Format Live Entertainment, Outstanding Short Form Series – Variety and Outstanding Short Form Series – Reality/Nonfiction.
The latter award replaces Outstanding Special Class - Short-Format Nonfiction Programs. Jerry Seinfeld's Crackle series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee has been nominated in that category twice.
AwesomenessTV produces the YouTube Red series Dance Camp. Others stars with shows on YouTube Red, a subscription service that launched in 2014, include PewDiePie's horror-themed reality program Scare PewDiePie. Currently, many episodes of popular online stars' shows are too long to be considered.
However, the new short form series winners will not receive their award at the Primetime Emmys ceremony but rather at the preliminary Creative Arts Emmys show, which will be held over two nights this year, rather than one.
In 2012, the YouTube series Kids React won Best Viral Video Series at the Daytime Emmy Awards.
In addition, this year, categorization of shortened seasons for regular shows has been changed—"once a show is established as a series, if additional shortened seasons are added (fewer than six episodes), it would still be considered a series, unless it was limited to one or two episodes (which would categorize it as a movie and a limited series respectively)," the Television Academy says This means if the new X-Files series and Fuller House are nominated, they would receive nods in the regular drama and comedy categories.
Other changes for the 2016 ceremony include the addition of an additional nominee in the directing and writing for comedy show and drama categories "to reflect the dramatic increase in series production."
The nominations for the 2016 Emmys will be announced on June 9.