In the realm of television, the Emmy Awards are the standard by which we determine what shows are worthy, and what shows are not. Like the Oscars in the film world, the Emmys represent a distinct honor bestowed upon a (very) select few each year. With that said, not every series feels the need to shoot for Emmy gold. Starz CEO Chris Albrecht recently opened up regarding Outlander's 2016 Emmy snub, and revealed that it's not really a big deal for the network. He elaborated:
I don't think we'll ever break through with those people on those shows. I was part of the team that invented how to campaign for Emmy awards. Trust me, it's not a level playing field. I spent years inside the TV Academy working it, and it took a lot of money and there's a certain momentum that goes along with that. Having said that, we couldn't be more proud of the work that is being done by the people on those shows. It is award-worthy. Whether it's an Emmy award or not is not the point.
Speaking at a Television Critics Association summer press tour event (via EW), Chris Albrecht explained that he doesn't even consider Outlander the type of show that lends itself to scores of Emmy nominations. The time travel love story already majorly appeals to an incredibly niche audience, and Starz differs from competitors in the sense that it does not throw an overwhelming amount of money or effort into the process of campaigning for award nominations.
Albrecht revealed that the earlier years of his career saw him playing a major role in several Emmy campaigns, so he knows them inside as well as out, and he seems to take much more pride in creating a beloved series than garnering accolades. Beyond that, he thinks that the TV academy needs to make a more concerted effort to try and evolve its standards in order to increase the number of shows that actually win and reflect the current diversity in television. Having the same show win year after year can become a bit tiresome, after all.
That being said, Outlander didn't walk away from the Emmy nominations completely empty-handed. The series did receive nod for its costume design as well as its production design, but compared to category-hogging shows like House of Cards and Game Of Thrones, it fell considerably short with regards to critical recognition.
Of course, at the end of the day Chris Albrecht feels confident in Outlander because audiences have genuinely responded to it -- even if the awards institutions haven't. Outlander has already received a renewal for a third and fourth season, and as such we will be seeing plenty more of this fantasy romance playing out for at least the next couple of years. Season 3 will hopefully premiere in 2017, meaning we have less than a year of "droughtlander" left to contend with.
Make sure to check out our fall premiere guide for more information concerning the upcoming slate of television debuts. We will bring you more details regarding the next two seasons of Outlander as they become available to us. For those of you who do care about television's biggest night of the year, the 2016 Emmy Awards will air on September 18 at 5 p.m. PST.