“Our viewers is at residence wanting escapism,” E!’s head of stay occasions Jen Neal says of Sunday’s two-hour Emmys pre-show
How do you placed on a pink carpet show with no pink carpet? That’s the problem E! will face when it places on its “Live From the Red Carpet” Emmys pre-show on Sunday, marking the primary time the community should cowl a serious awards show within the period of COVID.
“We had to consider this weekend in a totally totally different manner this yr,” Jen Neal, common supervisor, E! News, Live Events and Digital, Lifestyle Networks, mentioned. “We actually have to take a look at each side of what we’re doing by means of a special lens.”
Gone is the acquainted parade of stars, traces of photographers and crowds of followers. Instead, viewers will tune in to a pre-show hosted by Giuliana Rancic and Vivica A. Fox that includes a brand new, socially distanced set and interviews with celebrities by way of video chat. Neal says to count on typical pre-show parts like predictions for the main classes and interviews about upcoming tasks, solely with a looser, “extra spontaneous” really feel than a conventional pink carpet.
“I don’t suppose there are any precedents,” Neal mentioned. “It requires extra creativeness and creativity and spontaneity. We’re working with [producers] Den of Thieves, who’re terrific artistic companions, serving to us craft all of these particular and distinctive moments as a way to ship on that. But it’s unprecedented.”
MTV aired a pre-show forward of the 2020 Video Music Awards that includes solo pictures of its performers and presenters blended along with memorable red-carpet appears to be like from years previous, however Neal tells TheWrap that E! goes in a special path. For starters, the show might be stay “as a lot as attainable.”
“Obviously, this yr, there’s complexity with making that occur as seamlessly as we’ve got up to now,” Neal mentioned, acknowledging the potential technical difficulties of doing a digital stay show.
But the theme of the night is “You’re solely stay as soon as,” and that’s for the great and the unhealthy.
“We’re enthusiastic about what that may imply in each methods. It has been a special logistical problem for certain,” Neal mentioned. “Having to rely much more on know-how does point out that there might be moments that don’t work completely, however we’re embracing that and we’re ready with a number of methods to deal with stay manufacturing.”
Neal additionally says the show will discover methods to deal with the present second, whether or not meaning the pandemic, the Black Lives Matter motion or the upcoming presidential election. Striking a stability between these points and the joy of a Hollywood awards show will nearly actually be a problem, however it could be one alleviated barely by the absence of the same old pink carpet pageantry.
“Our viewers is at residence wanting escapism,” she mentioned. “They need enjoyable, they need celebration, however in addition they need to perceive what the celebs need to say about these vital subjects, grounding that actuality. And simply by the notion that we’re speaking to individuals at residence permits us to have totally different conversations.”
The lingering query in the back of everybody’s thoughts is, in fact, will viewers need to tune right into a pink carpet show if there’s no pink carpet? Sunday’s Emmys mark the primary time that query might be put to the check, however barring a sudden medical breakthrough, it gained’t be the final.
Neal is betting individuals will need to watch — out of sheer curiosity if nothing else.
“I believe viewers are excited for one of these content material and programming, for certain,” Neal mentioned. “All viewers might be curious. You know, they need a spot to go. And promising change and doing issues another way, typically, actually, actually helps.”