70th Emmy Awards: Female creative nominees down 18 percent from last year


The nominees for the 70th Emmy Awards were announced July 12 in Los Angeles with a lower number of female writers and directors recognized than last year.

Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series nominated the most women in creative categories, with 43 percent female nominees. Stefani Robinson, the only woman on the writing staff of Donald Glover’s FX comedy Atlanta, is nominated for the episode Barbershop. Liz Sarnoff (Crossing Jordan, Lost) is recognized for her work on HBO’s Barry. Amy Sherman-Palladino — the creative genius behind Gilmore Girls and Bunheads — is nominated for the first time for writing the outstanding pilot of Amazon’s The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Golden Globe winner Sherman-Palladino is also the only woman nominated in the Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series category for the same episode.

With the exceptions of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, the Outstanding Comedy Series category is dominated by male-run shows, though offerings like Glow and Black-ish pass the Bechdel-Wallace test in most episodes.

Only two female creatives are nominated for their work behind the camera in the Outstanding Drama Series categories. Killing Eve showrunner Phoebe Waller-Bridge for Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series is the only female writer nominated. Kari Skogland is recognized for directing The Handmaid’s Tale, the Hulu series that garnered two Emmy nominations in the category last year and took home Outstanding Drama Series, Outstanding Lead Actress for Elisabeth Moss, Outstanding Supporting Actress for Ann Dowd and Outstanding Guest Actress for Alexis Bledel. The Handmaid’s Tale is the only nominee in the Outstanding Drama Series category that is predominantly female-run (five of its seven series directors are women, though a majority of episodes are written by creator and Emmy nominee Bruce Miller). Other nominees like Stranger Things, The Crown and This Is Us do feature strong female leads, many of whom are nominated in the acting categories (Millie Bobby Brown and Claire Foy are recognized, though Mandy Moore was ignored).

Women accounted for 31 percent of directors nominated by the Television Academy last year, down to 13 percent this year. Of 16 writers nominated in both comedy and drama categories, only four are women. However small, these percentages are improvements upon the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ dismal numbers this year, nominating only four female screenwriters (three of which had male writing partners) and one woman director (the first in eight years and fifth in history) for Academy Awards.

The 70th Emmy Awards will air Monday, Sept. 17 on NBC.

© Georgiana E. Presecky (7/13/2018) FF2 Media

Top Photo: Golden Globe winner and Emmy nominee Rachel Brosnahan as “Midge Maisel” in The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, nominated for 14 Emmys this year.

Bottom Photo: Elisabeth Moss in The Handmaid’s Tale, nominated for 20 Emmys this year including Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series.

Photos Courtesy of Television Academy

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