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‘Gilmore Girls’: By Competing in the Emmys’ Limited Series Category, Does That Halt Talk of Another Season?

According to the TV Academy, limited series do "not have an ongoing storyline and/or main characters in subsequent seasons."

Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life Alexis Bledel Lauren Graham

“Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life”

Saeed Adyani/Netflix


Another season of “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life” is looking less likely, now that we’ve learned which Emmy category the show will compete in this year.

According to the Television Academy, the producers behind “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life” petitioned to face off in the limited series categories, and the Academy approved its eligibility there.

READ MORE: ‘Gilmore Girls’ Revival: Lauren Graham Says She’s Not Sure There’s a Need for a Second Season

The organization’s rules define limited series as “a program with two (2) or more episodes with a total running time of at least 150 program minutes that tells a complete, non-recurring story and does not have an ongoing storyline and/or main characters in subsequent seasons.”

It’s the last part of that rule that’s curious: Were “Gilmore Girls” to continue, it would have to compete this year as a drama. Ongoing series like “Fargo” and “American Horror Story” are able to compete in the limited series category because the shows’ characters and storylines change each season. “Gilmore Girls,” on the other hand, wouldn’t be “Gilmore Girls” without Rory and Lorelai.

The category decision could now put a serious damper on buzz that Neflix and Warner Bros. TV might revive the series yet again, something Netflix’s Ted Sarandos hinted at last month. But later, star Lauren Graham also seemed to put a stop to those rumors, telling the audience at Deadline’s Contenders event that “I don’t know if there is a need to do more. I wouldn’t want it to feel like we overstayed our welcome,”

Of course, Netflix and Warner Bros. TV could always bring back “Gilmore Girls” under another subtitle, and argue that it’s a different show, which is perhaps why the revival was officially titled “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life.” Stay tuned.

READ MORE: ‘Gilmore Girls’ Revival: Netflix in ‘Very Preliminary’ Talks for Another Season

A two-thirds vote from a nine-member TV Academy panel, which includes five industry leaders appointed by the Academy chairman and four appointees by the board of governors, was required to approve the petition.

“The Academy’s Industry Panel and the Academy have no information on Netflix’s development slate,” the Academy said in a statement provided to IndieWire. “The decision to permit Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life to enter as a Limited Series is based solely on the four-episode offering this year. Category consideration for any future episodes developed will be determined during the awards cycle in which they air.”

It wouldn’t be the first time that a show moved from limited series to regular series contention, but the decision to move “Gilmore Girls” into limited series consideration comes after the show’s previous, lengthy run on The WB (and later, The CW) as a regular drama series.

Last year’s winner for outstanding limited series, “The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story,” is part of Ryan Murphy’s “American Crime Story” anthology banner – but that show will return with two very different editions, “Katrina” and “Versace.”

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