What's Going to Happen at the Untelevised 2016 Daytime Emmys?
It’ll still be one hell of a party. Because of a last-minute budget snafu, the 43rd Annual Daytime Emmy Awards—to be held Sunday, May 1 in Los Angeles—will not be televised or even streamed live. The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences does plan to record the event and post it the following day on its website (emmyonline.org), but no one is pretending this isn’t a rotten situation.
“We’ve been through the good, the bad and the ugly with these awards,” says NATAS President Bob Mauro, “but we can’t lose sight of their true purpose—to honor excellence. We’re working hard to get back on the air and already have two outlets that want the show next year. In the meantime, we’re throwing a first-class ceremony.”
For the second year in a row, all four soaps—General Hospital, Days of Our Lives, The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful—are up for Outstanding Drama Series. And all three network morning shows—CBS This Morning, Today and Good Morning America—got nods for Outstanding Morning Program. What is this, kiddie soccer? Everyone gets a prize just for showing up?
“Wild as it seems, that’s the way the votes fell,” swears Daytime Emmys senior vice president David Michaels, who spearheaded a campaign to widely expand the number of voters this year. He also brought in lots of nonsoap performers to judge the soap-acting categories, resulting in some marvelous surprises and long-overdue nominations. “It’s the purest way to go,” Michaels says, “and it keeps it from being a popularity contest.”
Among those perhaps benefitting from the wider voter pool are The Young and the Restless’ Lauralee Bell, a first-time nominee after 33 years with the soap, and Days of Our Lives’ Mary Beth Evans (Kayla), a 30-year vet, who also scored her first nod. Adjustments have also been made in the NATAS voting system in order to eliminate ties, an effort to avoid a replay of last year when there were split votes in several categories, including Outstanding Daytime Drama.
There are no hosts for the ceremony, though entertainment reporters Mario Lopez, Nancy O’Dell and Kevin Frazier will serve as “guides” during the program. Presenters include Larry King, Rita Moreno, Shemar Moore, Carla Hall, Dr. Mehmet Oz, The Talk’s Julie Chen, Sheryl Underwood, Aisha Tyler, Sharon Osbourne and Sara Gilbert, as well as top cast members from all four soaps. A special Lifetime Achievement Emmy will be presented to Sonia Manzano (pictured at top), who retired after 44 years as Sesame Street‘s Maria.
It’ll be up to the stars themselves to bring the ballroom glamour and news of the winners to the fans at home, via such social-media platforms as Twitter, Instagram, Periscope and Snapchat. Y&R’s Christian LeBlanc (Michael), who is in the running for his fourth lead-actor trophy, is primed and ready.
“Technology will get these awards to you as they’re happening, one way or the other,” LeBlanc says. “I’m from New Orleans. If we drop something on the floor, we have a festival about it. So of course we’re going to celebrate the Daytime Emmys! We’d be fools not to show up and have the time of our lives.”