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The 72nd Emmy Awards will be a remote affair

RuPaul poses with the award for Outstanding Competition Program in the press room during the 71st Emmy Awards at Microsoft Theater on September 22, 2019 in Los Angeles.
RuPaul poses with the award for Outstanding Competition Program in the press room during the 71st Emmy Awards at Microsoft Theater on September 22, 2019 in Los Angeles. (Image credit: Dan MacMedan/Getty Images)

When the 72nd Emmy Award nominees (read the full list here) were announced, a pretty major question remained: Would the event be held in-person, with hundreds of people in an auditorium somewhere in Los Angeles? Or would it be a remote shindig? 

The answer will not shock you.

Variety snagged a letter from the producers and host Jimmy Kimmel that spells out in broad strokes what's going to happen. "We’re not going to be asking you to come to the Microsoft Theatre in downtown LA on September 20th," the letter states. "This year, it’s still going to be TV industry’s biggest night out… but we’ll come to you!"

It remains to be seen how much might be recorded, and how much will be done live. This week's nominee announcement ceremony was done remotely. But as we've all found out these past few months, remote broadcasts are tough on a good day — and they're definitely not usually of the sort of quality we've come to expect from an Emmy show.

(On the other hand, the prospect of spouses and kids and dogs photobombing an acceptance speech — either staged or on accident — could prove to be more entertaining than the show's ever been.)

Then there's the matter of what to wear. Without a red carpet on which to strut, and without high-definition cameras catching every glisten of a gown, this'll perhaps be a decidedly less haute affair. The producers get that, though they're still angling for the broadcast to look more like the Emmys we know and love, and less like the third round of the NFL Draft.

"If you want to be in formal wear," they wrote, "we’d love that, but equally if you’re in the UK and it’s 3am, perhaps you want to be in designer pajamas and record from your bed! 

The 72nd Emmy Awards will be broadcast at 8 p.m. Eastern Sept. 20 on on ABC.

Phil Nickinson

Phil spent his 20s in the newsroom of the Pensacola (Fla.) News Journal, his 30s on the road for AndroidCentral.com and Mobile Nations, is the Dad part of Modern Dad, and is editor of WhatToWatch.com.