Will COVID Keep the Oscars, Daytime Emmys, & More 2021 Awards Shows Mostly Virtual?

Oscars 2020 Statues Backstage
Matt Petit - Handout/A.M.P.A.S. via Getty Images

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 awards show telecasts went about as well as the rest of the TV lineup, meaning not so well at all, with most going virtual.

For example, the Daytime Emmys was entirely virtual (and pre-recorded). The Emmys were live, with some people there in-person and others attending virtually. Meanwhile, award shows such as the Oscars, Screen Actors Guild Awards, and Golden Globes were postponed, with new eligibility dates set as well.

What’s the plan for 2021 shows? Read on for what we know (so far) about the upcoming plans.

Oscars 2021: A Question Mark

What the Academy Awards will look like in 2021 is unclear. While a rep from the Academy and ABC said to Variety that “the Oscars in-person telecast will happen,” according to The Hollywood Reporter, a decision has yet to be made.

What we do know for certain is that the Oscars were postponed, from February 28 to April 25. That original air date is now the end of the eligibility period.

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Daytime Emmys: Just Like 2020

Meanwhile, the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences announced on December 1 that the 2021 ceremonies for the Daytime Emmys, Sports Emmys, News & Documentary Emmys, and Technology & Engineering Emmys will be virtual.

“The current timetables articulated by manufacturers project mass availability of vaccinations for the entire U.S. population by mid-summer 2021, potentially permitting a return to more traditional in-person ceremonies later in the fall,” Adam Sharp, president and CEO of the academy, said in a statement. “However, we have determined that delaying our 2021 events to possibly allow for a compressed calendar of in-person Emmy ceremonies late in the year would result in unacceptable delays to our awards cycle for 2022.”

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But it’s unclear just what those virtual ceremonies will look like. Sharp added: “We hope to build on [the 2020 ceremonies’] creative success in making the 2021 virtual gatherings even more inclusive and engaging celebrations of excellence.”