Jimmy Kimmel, host of the 2020 virtual Emmys show

Here's Everything You Need To Know About Watching The Emmys This Year

by Ani Bundel
Kevin Winter/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

When the coronavirus pandemic hit the United States, it shut down theaters across the country. It was March of 2020, and the beginning of the new year for films. But for the land of TV, which runs June to May, it came at the tail end of the season. That made this year's Emmy Awards a difficulty. Because most of the shows were able to end their seasons in time, it didn't exactly make sense to postpone the award show, but how to stage it while also social distancing? Apparently, but going virtual. So, here's how to watch the 2020 Emmys, and what to expect when tuning in:

When Jimmy Kimmel was announced as this year's host for the ABC-produced ceremony back in June, he said: "I don’t know where we will do this or how we will do this or even why we are doing this, but we are doing it, and I am hosting it." Thankfully, with nominations now out, some of those questions have been answered: The 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards will be an all-virtual ceremony, the first of its kind.

The news broke after the nominees for this year's ceremony received a letter from executive producers explaining how they were planning to tackle the awards ceremony.


According to Variety, which obtained the letter, it reads in part:

As you’ve probably guessed, we’re not going to be asking you to come to the Microsoft Theatre in downtown L.A. on Sept. 20. This year, it’s still going to be TV industry’s biggest night out… but we’ll come to you!

So, how will this rise to the occasion of something larger than a glorified Zoom call? The Television Academy is planning to take advantage of the highest cutting-edge technology. The letter continues:

We are assembling a top-notch team of technicians, producers and writers to work closely with Jimmy Kimmel and with you and your team, to make sure that we can film with you (and loved ones or whomever else you choose to be with) at your home, or another location of your choice. We’re going to make you look fabulous — we’re exploring the cutting edge of technology to allow to use good cameras and lighting and look forward to working with you to produce your unique "on screen" moments.

Specifics are still being worked out, and ABC and the Television Academy have promised more details as the show's date approaches:

As ABC and the Television Academy continue to formulate plans for the Emmys telecast, producers have taken the proactive step of reaching out to some nominees now to inform them of our intent to deliver a live show that is both celebratory and safe.

The 72nd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards will be held on Sept. 20, 2020, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.