“The person who’s going to be checking these nominations the closest is going to be Jeffrey Katzenberg because this is going to be a test of whether or not his Quibi experiment can work,” Gold Derby associate editor Zach Laws says in a slugfest with contributors Riley Chow and Luca Giliberti about the Short Form races at the 2020 Emmys (watch the video above). “It should be tailor-made for these short form categories,” continues Laws about the new streaming service, which only produces series with episodes under 10 minutes, making them eligible almost exclusively in the short form field.
Quibi accounts for 12 of the 33 submissions for Best Short Form Comedy/Drama Series, but Chow and Giliberti each predict that it will only take one of five nomination slots. Giliberti favors “The Stranger,” starring Maika Monroe and Dane DeHaan; Chow predicts a different drama in “Most Dangerous Game,” starring Liam Hemsworth and Christoph Waltz, although he notes that he is personally rooting for their comedies “Dummy,” “Nikki Fre$h” and “Reno 911!”
Predictions are instead dominated by online companion pieces to shows that contend in the main Best Comedy and Drama Series races. “Better Call Saul,” “Fear the Walking Dead,” “The Good Place,” “New Amsterdam,” “NOS4A2” and “Star Trek: Discovery” each have webisodes in contention. This would mark the second time in the five-year history of the Best Short Form Comedy/Drama category that only one original faced four franchise extensions, after 2017 when the independently-produced “Brown Girls” lost to “Better Call Saul” shorts and was also nominated opposite offshoots of “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” “Broad City” and “Fear the Walking Dead.”
The Best Short Form Actor and Actress races have been more receptive to independent content, but are expected to be overrun by big names with billion-dollar backing from Quibi this year. With most of the eligible actors from the companion pieces opting instead to submit their performances in their main series, Chow and Giliberti each see Quibi taking nine of the 10 acting slots opposite Marc Evan Jackson (“The Good Place”), who is on the ballot for Best Short Form Actor instead of Best Comedy Supporting Actor. Chow is also keeping an eye on Meredith Thomas, who appears to have submitted herself for the “Cake” anthology on FX, because “she is someone who is well-connected in the underground of the industry.” There is also more wiggle room with only 20 entrants in her category.
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