The Television Academy announced today that in light of an uncertain future due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, that it will cancel all three Governors Balls and turn the two-night Creative Arts Emmys virtual.
Effectively, the five separate events were altered “as a precautionary measure to protect the health and safety of Emmy winners, nominees and guests during the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” the TV Academy said. The Creative Arts Emmys are traditionally held the weekend before the Primetime Emmys (this year, September 12 and 13) with a Governors Ball after each. Another Governors Ball is held after the Primetime Emmys so its cancellation calls into question the potential future of the primetime show itself. However, no statement was made to that effect today.
The last time a change in these events happened was in 2001 after the 9/11 terrorist attacks when the Governors Ball went on but was renamed the Unity Ball for that year.
“This has been an incredibly challenging time for our industry; and though we are now making plans to get back to work, we know there are many still suffering from the work stoppage caused by the coronavirus,” TV Academy chairman/CEO Frank Scherma said, who also announced a plan to donate $1 million to the Actors Fund’s COVID-19 relief initiative.
“As the industry reemerges, we will continue to support our more than 24,000 members and our community through this donation and our Academy’s programs and resources,” Scherma said.
While no specific details were provided as to how the Creative Arts Emmys would be handed out, saying “the new format for these ceremonies is currently in development,” the TV Academy did reveal that it would be “an innovative virtual event taking place over several nights in September.”
The Creative Arts Emmys hand out nearly 100 awards over two evenings in largely craft and technical categories like stunts, music, reality hosting, makeup and costumes and guest acting.
ABC, which also hosts the Oscars, has the 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards set for September 20 this year but, as stated above, no word yet on any changes, adjustments or cancelation of the main show has been announced.