TV Writers Protest Emmy Banishment With Strong, Expertly Worded Letter
As envisioned by Movieline's state-of-the-art awards-simulator technology, the Emmys' decision to distribute 8 of the show's 28 awards before the actual telecast could lead to the corralling of nominated miniseries and drama series writers into a Nokia Theatre men's lavoratory, where they'll be forced to compete with the sounds of flushing toilets and XLerator hand dryers as they deliver their humble acceptance speeches.
That prospect has angered TV writers, who justifiably assert that TV is the quintessential writer's medium (as opposed to literature, which, let's face it, has belonged to dust jacket designers for years), thereby making this form of kudosfest apartheid particularly egregious. THR reports that over 100 of their ranks have signed a letter protesting their pre-taped Emmy ghettoization, including top showrunners like John Wells, Ron Moore, Carol Mendelsohn, Doug Ellin, Seth MacFarlane, Shonda Rhimes, and Damon Lindelof & Carlton Cuse.
The text of the letter is after the jump, followed by an equally censorious reproach from the Writers Guild of America, issued on Friday.
The protest letter:
"We, the undersigned showrunners and executive producers of television's current line-up of programs, oppose the Academy of Television Arts and Science's decision to remove writing awards from the live telecast. This decision conveys a fundamental understatement of the importance of writers in the creation of television programming and a symbolic attack on the primacy of writing in our industry. We employ ATAS to restore these awards to their rightful place in the live telecast of the 2009 Emmy Awards."
The WGA letter:
"This action of the board of governors is a clear violation of a longstanding agreement the Writers Guilds have with the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences regarding their awards telecast. It is also a serious demotion for writing and a fundamental misunderstanding of the importance of writers in the creation of television programs. Last year's Emmys suffered a tremendous decline in quality and ratings because of a lack of scripted material. That the Academy would then decide to devalue the primary and seminal role that writing plays in television is ridiculous and self-defeating."