Thursday, July 27, 2017

Nature and science at the Primetime Emmy Awards

It's time to follow through on my telling my readers at the end of 'Wild Yellowstone: The Frozen Frontier' to "Stay tuned for more about this year's nominees from both the Primetime and News and Documentary Emmy Awards."  In the previous installment on this year's Primetime Emmys, I talked about science fiction.  Today, I'm looking through the Emmy nomination list for science fact, where I found three shows.

The first was "Planet Earth II" with ten nominations.  Before I list them, I'm sharing its official extended trailer.

10 years ago Planet Earth changed our view of the world. Now we take you closer than ever before. This is life in all its wonder. This is Planet Earth II.

A decade ago, the landmark television series Planet Earth redefined natural history filmmaking, giving us the ultimate portrait of life on Earth. Planet Earth II, narrated by Sir David Attenborough, will reveal our planet from a completely new perspective, using significant advances in both filming technology and our understanding of the natural world.

And if you are not excited enough already it features an original score by legendary composer Hans Zimmer.
The series was nominated for its music, but not for its theme song, which is the soundtrack for the trailer.  Instead, composers Jacob Shea and Jasha Klebe were nominated for Outstanding Music Composition For A Series (Original Dramatic Score) for the first episode, "Islands."  The other nine nominations include Documentary or Nonfiction Series, two nominations for Directing for a Nonfiction Program (Fredi Devas and Elizabeth White), two nominations for Cinematography for a Nonfiction Program (one each for the teams for "Islands" and "Cities," the final episode), two nominations for Picture Editing for a Nonfiction Program (Dave Pearce and Matt Meech), Outstanding Sound Editing For Non Fiction Programming, and Outstanding Sound Mixing For Nonfiction Programming.  I'm rooting for it in all categories, although it's competing with "O.J: Made in America" and "13th" in many of them.  The former won an Oscar; the latter was nominated for it.  That's a quality field.

Speaking of quality, two other shows about science and scientists were nominated for Emmys.  Follow over the jump for them.

By the way, I'm not feeling bad for Zimmer not being nominated for his main title theme music; he earned a nomination in that category for "Genius," one of ten for the second program I'm featuring today.  I know it is a biography, not a science show, but it is about Albert Einstein.  Here's the trailer.

From Executive Producers Brian Grazer and Ron Howard, National Geographic's first scripted anthology series, GENIUS, will focus on Nobel Prize-winning physicist Albert Einstein. The all-star cast includes Geoffrey Rush, Johnny Flynn, and Emily Watson.
In addition to Zimmer's nomination for main title theme music, the show was nominated for Outstanding Miniseries, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for Geoffrey Rush, Outstanding Directing For A Miniseries Movie Or A Dramatic Special, Outstanding Costumes For A Period Fantasy Series, Limited Series, Or Movie, Outstanding Hairstyling For A Miniseries Or A Movie, Outstanding Makeup For A Miniseries Or A Movie, Outstanding Sound Editing For A Miniseries Movie Or A Special, Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Miniseries Or A Movie, and Outstanding Special Visual Effects in a Supporting Role.  I'm rooting for the show in all categories except theme music, where I'm rooting for either "Westworld" or "Stranger Things," and costumes, where it also competing with "Westworld."  However, I'm not optimistic, as it's contending against "Big Little Lies" in half of the categories.   Remember when I wrote in 'Simpsons,' 'Westworld,' 'American Horror Story' among Golden Trailer winners that "I'll know to look for "Big Little Lies" among the Emmy nominees next month?"  It earned 16 nominations.

The final nominated show is "Bill Nye Saves The World," which earned two nominations for Outstanding Writing for Nonfiction Programming and Outstanding Production Design for a Variety, Nonfiction, Reality, or Reality Competition Programming.  Here's its trailer.

Bill Nye – science guy, educator, mechanical engineer, and curator of curiosity – returns with a new show. Each episode of Bill Nye Saves the World tackles a specific topic or concept through lively panel discussions, wide-ranging correspondent reports from a crackerjack team, and Bill’s very special blend of lab procedure and sly personality.
This is a show I should watch.  I know my students are.  As for it winning, I don't have much hope.  It's competing for the writing award with "13th."  In the production design, it's competing against "Saturday Night Live," one of the two most nominated shows this season.  Bill Nye and Netflix should just be happy to get the nominations.

I'll have more on the Emmys later this week along with another driving update.  Stay tuned.

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