2020 Primetime Emmy Nominations: ‘The Simpsons’ Lead A Conservative Pack Of Animation Nominees

The nominations are out for the 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards, presented by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. Campaigning this year has been disrupted by the pandemic, but that doesn’t seem to have affected the academy’s tastes.

The voters have filled the outstanding animated program category with usual suspects, disregarding this year’s unusually rich offering of new shows. Of the five nominees, four were in the running last year. The fifth, Rick and Morty, won the previous year. Netflix’s two contenders here, Big Mouth and Bojack Horseman, have never won the award; the latter, whose final season came out this year to great critical acclaim, is in with a real chance.

The short form category also holds few surprises. Two nominees, Robot Chicken and Steven Universe Future, are here almost by right. At least one of the two has been nominated every year since 2010 (if we count Steven Universe, to which Future serves as an epilogue). The third, Forky Asks a Question, is one of the flagship short-form series of newcomer Disney+; it is a Pixar-produced spin-off from Toy Story 4.

Netflix dominates the animation and vfx categories with ten nominations, just as it tops the overall list with an incredible 160 nominations — more than any network has ever achieved. HBO comes second in animation and vfx, with six nominations (none of which are for animated shows). Fox has four nominations, three of those for The Simpsons, a show with 34 Primetime Emmys already under its belt. That it is this year’s most-nominated animated show speaks to voters’ conservatism.

Disney+ and Apple TV+ are competing for the first time. Expect next year’s list to be even busier with streaming contenders — whatever that list looks like after the production disruptions of this year.

It’s now down to the Television Academy’s 23,000-odd voters to watch the nominees and cast their votes online. The Creative Arts Emmy Awards will be announced on September 19, followed by all the other awards the following day. The ceremony will be hosted — in some form — by Jimmy Kimmel and broadcast on ABC.

A list of all the nominees in the animation and vfx categories can be found below. For the full list of nominees in all categories, visit the Emmy website.


Animated Program

Big Mouth, “Disclosure the Movie: The Musical!” — Netflix

Bob’s Burgers, “Pig Trouble in Little Tina” — Fox

Bojack Horseman, “The View from Halfway Down” — Netflix

Rick and Morty, “The Vat of Acid Episode” — Adult Swim

The Simpsons, “Thanksgiving of Horror” — Fox

Short Form Animated Program

Forky Asks a Question, “What Is Love?” — Disney+

Robot Chicken, “Santa’s Dead (Spoiler Alert) Holiday Murder Thing Special” — Adult Swim

Steven Universe Future, “Fragments” — Cartoon Network



Children’s Program

Jim Henson’s The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance — Netflix

Star Wars Resistance — Disney Channel

We Are the Dream: The Kids of the Oakland MLK Oratorical Fest — HBO


Character Voice-Over Performance

Maya Rudolph as Connie the Hormone Monstress — Big Mouth, “How to Have an Orgasm” — Netflix

Leslie Odom Jr. as Owen — Central Park, “Episode One” — Apple TV+

Wanda Sykes as Gladys — Crank Yankers, “Bobby Brown, Wanda Sykes & Kathy Griffin” — Comedy Central

Taika Waititi as IG-11 — The Mandalorian, “Chapter 8: Redemption” — Disney+

Nancy Cartwright as Bart Simpson, Nelson, Ralph, Todd — The Simpsons, “Better Off Ned” — Fox

Hank Azaria as Professor Frink, Moe, Chief Wiggum, Carl, Cletus, Kirk, Sea Captain — The Simpsons, “Frinkcoin” — Fox


Main Title Design

Abstract: The Art of Design — Netflix — A Radical Media Production in association with Tremolo Productions & Godfrey Dadich

Carnival Row — Prime Video — Legendary Pictures TV and Amazon Studios

Godfather Of Harlem — Epix — ABC Signature Studios

The Morning Show — Apple TV+ — Media Res

The Politician — Netflix — A Fox21 Television Studios Production

Watchmen — HBO — HBO Entertainment in association with White Rabbit, Paramount Television, Warner Bros. Television & DC Comics

Westworld — HBO — HBO Entertainment in association with Kilter Films, Bad Robot and Warner Bros. Television


Special Visual Effects

Lost in Space, “Ninety-Seven” — Netflix — Legendary Television

The Mandalorian, “Chapter 2: The Child” — Disney+ — Lucasfilm Ltd.

Stranger Things, “Chapter Eight: The Battle of Starcourt” — Netflix — Netflix

Watchmen, “See How They Fly” — HBO — HBO Entertainment in association with White Rabbit, Paramount Television, Warner Bros. Television & DC Comics

Westworld, “Crisis Theory” — HBO — HBO Entertainment in association with Kilter Films, Bad Robot and Warner Bros.


Special Visual Effects in a Supporting Role

Devs, “Episode 8” — FX Networks — FX Productions

The Handmaid’s Tale, “Household” — Hulu — MGM, Daniel Wilson Productions, The Littlefield Company, White Oak Pictures

Tales From The Loop, — “Loop” — Prime Video — Fox21 Television Studios and Amazon Studios

Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, “Strongman” — Prime Video — Paramount Television and Amazon Studios

Vikings, “The Best Laid Plans” — History — An Octagon and Take 5 production in association with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer



Original Interactive Program

The Messy Truth VR Experience — Oculus — Magic Labs Media, EAB, RYOT

Rebuilding Notre Dame — Oculus — Targo in association with Facebook Oculus

When We Stayed Home — Oculus — Targo in association with Facebook Oculus

Interactive Extension of a Linear Program

Mr. Robot — Season_4.0 ARG — USA Network — Ralph Interactive, 5th Column Games

Stranger Things — Scoops Ahoy: Operation Scoop Snoop — Netflix — 22Squared, m ss ng p eces, Baskin Robbins

Westworld — Free Will Is Not Free Interactive Experience — HBO — HBO Entertainment in association with Kilter Films, Bad Robot and Warner Bros. Television


Derivative Interactive Program

Big Mouth Guide To Life — Netflix — Social Life/Netflix

Doctor Who: The Runaway — BBC America — British Broadcasting Corporation/Passion Animation Studios


By ALEX DUDOK DE WIT/Cartoonbrew

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