Extra: Emmy Awards rule changes; TV France merges with UniFrance

Emmys change doc eligibility rules The Television Academy’s Board of Governors has approved rule changes beginning with the current 2021 Emmy season, including a clarification of eligibility for documentaries that have ...
June 23, 2021

Emmys change doc eligibility rules

The Television Academy’s Board of Governors has approved rule changes beginning with the current 2021 Emmy season, including a clarification of eligibility for documentaries that have previously won or been considered for Oscars.

Beginning in 2022, any documentary that’s made eligible for an Academy Award will be deemed a theatrical film, making it ineligible to compete for an Emmy. The change ends the issue of “double dipping,” in which films that have been nominated for or won Oscars then competed for an Emmy when they move to a streaming platform or are broadcast on television.

The Television Academy amended its rules last year to exclude any documentary nominated for an Oscar from Emmy eligibility, meaning this year’s Oscar winner for best documentary feature, My Octopus Teacher, won’t be eligible for an Emmy, nor will the other nominees. However, other docs that campaigned for an Oscar but didn’t make the shortlist of nominees were still eligible. Under the new, clarified rules, even being up for an Oscar removes a documentary film from Emmy eligibility.

The Television Academy also announced non-gendered acting nominees can now be referred to as “performers” instead of by gendered terms “actor” and “actress,” both on their nomination certificate and on their statuette if they win.

Vice, Telus to produce trio of docs from Take Care incubator

Vice Media and the Telus Fund have announced three documentary series that will go into production this summer as part of the Take Care content incubator launched earlier this year.

Take Care focuses on short original docuseries about the mental health of Canadian youth. It’s designed to help young filmmakers create documentary projects to look at issues affecting the mental health of young Canadians, like relationships, technology and finances.

According to Vice, 50 producers from across Canada submitted pitches, with the top three getting the greenlight to start this summer. Under the Take Care initiative, the Telus Fund will finance up to 75% of each series.

The selected projects are Bad at This (pictured), a 6 x 6-minute series “about people who suck at things and do them anyway;” Breaking Ground (4 x 5 minutes), examining Asian-Canadian youth amid the rise of anti-Asian discrimination during the COVID-19 pandemic; and Living in Flow (6 x 5 minutes), following six youth from Atlantic Canada for whom water is an essential part of their self-care process.

The winning series will premiere exclusively on Vice’s Take Care content hub on its website and social media later this year, with a special launch event planned for this fall.

TV France dissolves, merges with UniFrance 

TV France International, the association of French television program exporters, will dissolve and merge with UniFrance, the publicly funded body that promotes French film content internationally, to form a new organization that will promote all French audiovisual and cinematic content globally.

The new body will use the UniFrance moniker and will be split into two divisions, one for exporters and one for cinema and audiovisual producers.

The move comes after a general meeting held on Wednesday (June 23) that saw TV France International members voting overwhelmingly in favor of approving the merger with UniFrance, which had previously been approved by the group’s board of directors in April.

“TV France has been active for 27 years, and has always been dedicated to supporting  exports of audiovisual programs. Its history includes worldwide travel, a multitude of  contacts and numerous actions put in place little by little,” Hervé Michel, chairman of TV France, said in a release.

“This transformation ushers in a new era, for the team, our members and French export, which will now benefit from a significantly stronger association with a brand new dynamism. That said, we obviously feel a little sad at the end of this chapter in our story.”

Sarah Hemar, executive director of TV France International, said the future looks bright, noting that TV France will end with member numbers at an all-time high with more than 160 companies, and a record number of producers who are in support of this merger.

Federation, Echo Studio team for doc on soccer legend Nadia Nadim

France’s Federation Entertainment and Echo Studio announced the production of a new documentary Nadia, about a former Afghan refugee who became a star player for a French football team. The film will premiere on French channel group Canal+.

The 90-minute doc tells the story of Nadia Nadim, who went from refugee to star for the Paris Saint-Germain football club. The film is part of Sunny Side of the Doc’s Women Talent Hub, a selection of six projects presented to broadcasters and decisionmakers, with the aim of highlighting women filmmakers working in the non-fiction space.

The film comes from director Anissa Bonnefont, her second documentary feature following the critically acclaimed Wonder Boy, which received a special jury mention at the Tribeca Film Festival and was nominated for Best Documentary Film at the 2020 César Awards.

Nadia is a Federation Entertainment production, in co-production with Echo Studio and in collaboration with Canal+. The film will be distributed by Federation Entertainment.

About The Author
Andrew Jeffrey joined Realscreen in 2021 as its news editor. Here, he helps to oversee assignment, reporting and editing for Realscreen's daily newsletter. Prior to his work covering documentary and non-fiction film and TV, he worked as a reporter and associate producer for CBC Edmonton, and as a reporter for The Star Calgary, where he covered daily news on beats such as local and provincial politics, health care and harm reduction, sports and education. His work has appeared in other Canadian news outlets such as TVO, the Edmonton Journal and Avenue Magazine.