2020 Emmys Producers Reveal Their Wild Plan to Pull Off a Virtual Ceremony

The producers of the 2020 Emmys shared their plans for the virtual ceremony, which will be hosted by Jimmy Kimmel live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, Calif.

By Cydney Contreras Aug 24, 2020 10:38 PMTags
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The 2020 Emmys are going to look a little different this year. And by a little, we really mean a lot.

One could even say that in these "uncertain times," the only thing that's certain is how weird it will be for stars to "attend" the award show from the comfort of their homes. Because as of right now, the Emmys producers are planning to air live from the nominees' houses, located across the world.

In an interview with Variety, executive producer Reginald Hudlin estimated they could have 140 camera feeds coming into the Staples Center, a command center of sorts for the Emmys team. This will also serve as the stage for host Jimmy Kimmel.

Who will operate these cameras, one may ask? Well, even that has yet to be determined, according to Done + Dusted President Ian Stewart

Stewart and Hudlin said the goal is to have camera operators go to the nominee's chosen location, but if that isn't possible they're prepared to ask a family member or anyone else in the nominee's COVID bubble to step into the role. At the end of the day, their goal is to avoid poor quality footage, because nobody likes a grainy image.

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"We're not trying to make the Zoomies, we're trying to make the Emmys," Stewart explained. "So one of the things we are trying to do is get the highest-end kit to wherever that person is on whatever level of comfort they have. The best thing for us is to have very high-end cameras, with a person operating them in somebody's house or wherever they are. That's our starting point."


As for presenting the award itself, the producers are trying to figure that out still. One suggestion the men shared was "having cars race to winners' homes to slide them an Emmy statue," but considering some stars are in England and beyond, this was ruled out. 

This has led them to question whether it's even necessary for the winner to hold an Emmy statue during their acceptance speech. 

Some traditionalists would argue that it's quintessential to the experience, but the same used to be said of attending the event in the first place and that's just not possible during a pandemic. 

For this reason, the producers have essentially waved goodbye to the dress code. Stewart said they're open to "variation," adding, "If you want to be in your sweats on your sofa that's also fine."

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And for obvious reasons, there won't be a red carpet or arrivals moment ahead of the ceremony. Hudlin stated, "Ultimately it felt like we should stick to what's on our plate and get that done."

To make up for what used to be one of the more exciting parts of the night, the producers are leaning on "potential musical numbers by major artists" and giving a more behind-the-scenes look at the entire production process.

All in all, the producers are hoping for the best and crossing their fingers that all goes as planned. 

Stewart mused, "It will be much more casual, much more fun, as we're more in it together. It will go where it goes. We hope really well, but I can't sit here and say that it's going to go 100 percent perfectly because no one's ever done it before."

The 72nd Emmy Awards will air live on ABC on Sunday, Sept. 20 at 5:00 p.m.