And then we came to the end.
It’s been a harrowing few months but on Thursday night, the preliminary TV awards season came to a close at the 36th Film Independent Spirit Awards, with the distribution of the organization’s first ever TV awards.
Now it’s just a waiting game. From here, it’s a mere five weeks until the end of the Emmy eligibility period, and coming weeks will see networks and streamers throw their awards machinations into high gear. This is particularly true for distributors who play in both the film and TV arenas. You can bet a place like Netflix will have a lot more time to focus on “The Crown” and “Master of None” once the campaigns for Best Picture nominees “Trial of the Chicago 7” and “Mank” have concluded.
For now, though, the TV industry has a moment to catch its breath and refill its tank before heading full bore into the Emmy season to come.
In the meantime, here’s what went down in the last week on the TV awards landscape.
As mentioned above, the Indie Spirit Awards introduced its inaugural TV awards Thursday night to a wholly respectable crop of winners. HBO’s limited series “I May Destroy You” took home prizes for its ensemble cast and scripted series, while Netflix’s limited series “Unorthodox” nabbed accolades for Best Actor and Actress. Additionally, Netflix’s documentary series “Immigration Nation” was victorious in Non-scripted/Documentary Series.
But while the winners were fine, the question remains: Why does Film Independent think it’s qualified to oversee TV awards in the first place?
While a large portion of the Annie Awards are dedicated to film, there were several notable TV wins, boosting some of the finest animation in the medium. Chief among them was Netflix’s adorable series “Hilda,” which features an adventurous young girl (as voiced by “Game of Thrones” fave Bella Ramsey) and her pet deerfox Twig. The title won three Annies — two specifically for an episode focused on Twig’s past — the most of any series. Cartoon Network also saw success with “Genndy Tartakovsky’s Primal” which scored two Annie Awards.
At the ACE Editing Awards, the TV honors returned to the status quo, with most of the prizes going to shows that have already seen a lot of love, either at last year’s Emmys, in the recent Emmy off-season, or in some cases, both. PopTV’s “Schitt’s Creek” and Netflix’s “Ozark” won their respective categories, as did AMC’s “Better Call Saul.” All three of the shows are out of eligibility for the upcoming season. With regard to contenders, Apple TV+’s “Ted Lasso” and Netflix’s “The Queen’s Gambit” were also victorious, suggesting that the Emmy frontrunners in Comedy Series and Limited Series are still holding steady.
Meanwhile, leave it to the American Society of Cinematographers to mix things up a little with their honors. While, yes, the organization dispensed trophies to Disney+’s “The Mandalorian” and Netflix’s “The Crown,” to say nothing of awarding “The Queen’s Gambit” because that’s just what we do now, the group also featured my favorite winner of the entire awards season. Specifically, a win for Freeform’s “Motherland: Fort Salem,” a series about young witches recruited into the military industrial complex, but, like, sexy, in the Episode of a One-Hour Television Series – Commercial category. What a delight!