Before the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences presents the winged figurines to the 2022 International Emmy Awards, they should open the event with the sentence: Mission accomplished.
When the Academy celebrated the opening of the International Emmys in 1973, the interest and market for television outside the United States was almost zero. This was the world before cable, three networks, and foreign programming, or any kind of variety, was hard to find on primetime showtimes.
Half a century later, international performances take place all over the dial. Thanks to the number of streaming services now offering foreign programming, American audiences can watch nearly every nominee this year. Figures from Whip Media, a US company that operates a worldwide content licensing platform, show that the share of non-US titles viewed in the country has more than doubled, from slightly below 8% in 2018 to over 16% in 2021 .
“I believe Netflix [Spanish-language] drugs [which debuted in 2015] to get American audiences to accept subtitles,” said James Durie, head of scriptwriting at Cineflix Rights (he was also a co-producer of the Apple TV+ Israeli spy TV series. Tehran — last year’s best drama winner at the International Emmys — and Irvine Welsh’s Crime, a Scottish procedure that received this year’s best actor nomination for Dougray Scott). “We now have channels like AMC+, PBS and Hulu all buying foreign language shows.”
That demand has helped fuel a worldwide production boom as global streamers double down on non-US content. Whip Media says that about 38 percent of new Netflix shows are being developed in languages other than English. Nearly a quarter of Disney+ content is not in English, and competitors Amazon and Apple have also increased spending on vernacular shows worldwide. (HBO, the global content champion, only recently pulled out of international programming as part of company-wide cost-cutting following the Warner Bros.-Discovery merger.)
All of this is proof of concept for the International Emmy Awards, which strive to celebrate and promote the best in small-screen entertainment outside of the United States. Helpmain character kill New Year’s Eve‘s Jodie Comer), a workplace comedy (co-produced by A24 Dream While Blackfrom BBC) and teen rom-coms (by Netflix Sex education) to French comedies (Canal+/Netflix’s On the brinkstarring Julie Delpy), Scandinavian LGBTQ+ period drama (SVT’s royal secret) and Philippine crime thriller (HBO Max’s In the work).
“When you look at the geographic reach, diversity and quality of our contenders, it is clear that great television knows no borders,” said International Academy president and chief executive officer. Bruce Paisner noted.
Nowhere is this more evident than in Asia, with original shows from Korea and Japan enjoying unprecedented global success. Korea is about to have a turning point year, with a boom around the world Squid game won six Primetime Emmys and, according to streaming consulting firm Parrot Analytics, takes the No. 1 spot as the most-requested new series coming out in 2021. Parrot predicts that if Netflix goes out of business Squid game in two more seasons — a second season was announced in June — the show could become the streamer’s most valuable title, potentially generating more than $2 billion in cumulative revenue by 2027. .
This year’s International Emmy Awards will honor “Korean wave” pioneer Miky Lee, vice president of Korean media giant CJ Group, with the 2022 Board of Directors Emmy Award. An honor The event’s other big event, the International Emmy Founders Awards, will go to an all-American creator: Ava DuVernay. Writer-director-producer of Selma, 13th and When they see us will be praised for her work of a lifetime, which, as Paisner notes, is all “a lifelong effort in her career to support women and people of color in the entertainment industry and ensure inclusiveness.” .”
Inclusiveness and diversity will be appreciated at the 2022 International Emmy Awards, with nominees from five continents competing for the biggest prize in global television.
“Internationally, the Emmy Award is that seal of validation, that seal of quality,” says Durie. “They prove your show is groundbreaking and worthy of the best show in the world.”
This story first appeared in the November 16 issue of The Hollywood Reporter. Click here to sign up.