‘Life Below Zero’ Emmy submissions: 5 entries include Best Unstructured Reality Program, Best Cinematography and more

Will “Life Below Zero” continue to rise at the Emmys? To date the National Geographic series has won four Emmys out of its nine nominations, and in 2019 it earned its very first bid for Best Unstructured Reality Program. Can it win this time? Scroll down to see the five races the show has entered in for consideration on the Emmy ballot, including the top category.

“Life Below Zero” has been on the air since 2013, following the lives of people living in remote areas of Alaska. It got its first Emmy nomination in 2015 for Best Cinematography for Reality Programming. Then it won that category in 2016. In 2017 it received its first nom and win for Best Picture Editing for an Unstructured Reality Program. And it won twice more for its cinematography in 2018 and 2019.

The show had its biggest nominations haul yet in 2019, picking up three for its picture editing and cinematography again, and for Best Unstructured Reality Program. But it ran into a buzz saw in the top contest: CNN’s topical series “United Shades of America with W. Kamau Bell” won for the last three years in a row (2017-2019). The good news for “Life Below Zero,” though, is that “United Shades” isn’t on the ballot this year since it didn’t air new episodes during the eligibility period. That opens the door for a new winner.

“Life” could be nominated in the same three categories it got last year plus two others: Best Casting for a Reality Program and Best Sound Mixing for a Nonfiction/Reality Program. For its cinematography, sound mixing and picture editing the show submitted the same episode: the season finale “The New World” in which “Jessie races the clock to build a permanent home on his new land, Sue travels to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and The Hailstones all gather in Kiwalik.” If it sweeps those five categories in the nominations, that could be a sign of widespread support from the television academy. How do you think it’ll do?

Best Unstructured Reality Program

Best Casting (Reality)

Best Cinematography (Reality)
“The New World”

Best Picture Editing (Unstructured Reality)
“The New World”

Best Sound Mixing (Nonfiction/Reality)
“The New World”

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