The 2021 Emmys moved to what was technically an outdoor location to be COVID-19 compliant but, as at least one presenter noted, it looked a bit too ‘inside’.
Emmys builds a ‘bubble’ inside Staples Center
Broadcast on CBS this year, the 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards come from the Event Deck at LA Live entertainment venue, which features the fully covered Microsoft Theater, the regular venue for the Emmys. It’s also adjacent to the Staples Center, which was the alternate host of last year’s “bubbly” Emmys.
The ceremony took place under a semi-permanent tent-like structure on the roof of the complex.
Pictures from previous events held on the site show that it can be configured in a number of ways, including mixing a roof garden style area with the covered part. Additional tents and tent-like structures can also be set up as needed for ancillary event areas or operations such as catering and production control.
Whether or not the area is truly ‘on the outside’ is likely debatable, but it should be noted that other major award ceremonies have taken place in similar configurations.
Oscars telecast tries to turn into a movie, with varying success
The 2021 Oscars in April actually took place indoors, albeit in the large open room inside Union Station with an accompanying exterior “lounge”.
Participants were also required to be vaccinated and some nominees accepted remote rewards to help reduce travel.
Inside the structure, an elegant and bold frame has been created using oversized black panels with an oversized Emmy statuette in the center.
This was supported by a simple cyc with color changing lighting and a short staircase.
This element, which is similar to those seen in other LA Live platform events, also served as a gateway for presenters and speakers.
Further on, a square stage was used for most of the presentations. A small base was used to hold the statuettes in order to avoid any contact or close contact during the presentation (as with most award ceremonies, the trophies are not engraved during the presentation on stage; this is true. done later behind the scenes).
The production added two long LED strips at the top of each side of the structure, which were used in a variety of ways, including showcasing the names and images of the categories and winners.
During an extended opening number, the LED was also used to display the lyrics of the song, so that audience members could sing along. These graphcis were complemented by a “bouncing” Emmy globe on top as the words were sung.
The ever popular “In Memoriam” segment also used the panels, featuring clips and photos of each person with a darkened lighting scheme.
Gradients were used extensively in lower third style graphics used to identify candidates. These graphics, along with those displayed on the LED in space, changed color throughout the show and would match each other as well as the stage backlight.
This particular show did not use the multibox layout showing each nominee in real time, but the winners were also identified on screen.
CBS also showcased a unique typographic interpretation of the “The Emmys” logotype – with the word “Emmys” character-width stretched and “The” in a condensed style.
It didn’t match the typography used in CBS key art released before the event – and some on-air promotions used yet another typeface.
These typographical inconsistencies are not uncommon, regardless of which network is broadcasting the event, although a light, modern geometric sans serif has been used on and off in recent years.
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