Sunday, September 3, 2023

Wolf Blitzer and Barbara Kopple to receive Lifetime Achievement Awards at the News & Doc Emmy Awards

I concluded 'Anderson Cooper 360' vs. 'CBS Mornings' for Outstanding Live News Program at the News & Doc Emmy Awards with a program note: "Even if he loses this category, Wolf Blitzer will still walk away with a trophy, as he will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award for news. Stay tuned for an entry about that..." Here are the highlights from the press release.
New York and Los Angeles – August 22, 2023 – NATAS has announced that award-winning television news anchor, journalist and author Wolf Blitzer and esteemed award-winning director/producer Barbara Kopple, will be the Lifetime Achievement Honorees at the 44th Annual News & Documentary Emmy® Awards. Blitzer will be honored for his legendary career in news and Kopple for her work on numerous film and television documentaries. Blitzer will receive his honor at the News ceremony on Wednesday, September 27, and Kopple’s will be presented at the Documentary ceremony on Thursday, September 28. Both ceremonies will take place at the Palladium Times Square in New York City.

Adam Sharp, President and CEO, NATAS, said: “We are thrilled to recognize two icons with Lifetime Achievement Emmy Awards. Wolf Blitzer and Barbara Kopple each continue to enjoy successful careers and have made a deep impact in the world of television journalism and documentaries. Through their achievements, they have left indelible marks of distinction on the industry.”

Wolf Blitzer said: “I am truly honored to receive this esteemed award from the Academy. When Ted Turner hired me, he told me, ‘Wolf, at CNN, the news comes first’ and that has been my guiding light these 33 years and continues to be my advice to young journalists today. I consider myself incredibly fortunate that I still get up every morning and look forward to going to work and reporting the news with some of the smartest people I know. This award is a testament to the hard work and dedication of so many talented journalists whom I have worked with, been mentored by, and learned from during my career.”

Barbara Kopple said: “I am deeply moved and honored to receive this recognition. What it means to me is that the many people whose lives I was lucky enough to film will not be forgotten. They are a treasure to us all. There will be more to come.”
I've taken the liberty of correcting the next paragraph to read 'Wolf Blitzer is a 33-year veteran of CNN and is the anchor of The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer, which just celebrated 18 years on the air. The program airs on weekdays and provides viewers with in-depth reports about the political, international, and breaking news stories of the day..' Yes, I used to be an English teacher.

Follow over the jump for the four nominations for The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer at these awards along with the notable awards and nominations of Barbara Kopple over her career.

Outstanding Live Interview – Short Form
Anderson Cooper 360
Anderson Cooper and Olena Gnes – Mother of Three Living in a Bomb Shelter in Kviv CNN
Anderson Cooper 360 Uvalde Shooting, Anderson Cooper Interviews Angel Garza CNN
Erin Burnett OutFront Erin Burnett & Serhiy Perebyinis CNN
The Lead with Jake Tapper Worldwide Exclusive: President Zelensky’s First Interview as War Leader CNN
The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer Blitzer & Adel Al-Jubeir CNN
This Week with George Stephanopoulos Defying Putin on The Air ABC
TODAY College Football Star’s Brave Decision NBC
The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer faces a lot of friendly fire, as three CNN programs have four nominations among them, including two of the seven for Anderson Cooper 360. CNN had better hope that its NATAS members coalesce on one nominee and that the other voters who don't work for ABC or NBC and MSNBC settle on the same candidate. Otherwise, vote splitting will allow ABC or NBC to win. My guess is that the winner will be either The Lead with Jake Tapper's Worldwide Exclusive: President Zelensky’s First Interview as War Leader or This Week with George Stephanopoulos's Defying Putin on The Air.

By the way, last year's winner is no guide. First, there was only an Outstanding Live Interview category. The split into short form and long form is new this year. Second, the winner last year was The New York Times, which isn't even nominated in this category, but is nominated in the long form category, where one of the newspapers of record is competing against Anderson Cooper 360, among others. I'll get to that, too.

Now for two categories I mentioned yesterday.

Outstanding Investigative News Coverage: Short Form
Anderson Cooper 360
Investigating Uvalde CNN
CBS Mornings Decades of Exposure CBS
How Iran’s Security Forces Use Rape to Quell Protests CNN
The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer Horror at Kabul’s Abbey Gate CNN
The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer Russia Plunders Sudan’s Gold To Boost Putin’s War in Ukraine CNN
I have my doubts that either Anderson Cooper 360 or CBS Mornings will win this category. The most nominated entry in this field is The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer's "Horror at Kabul’s Abbey Gate" report, which is also nominated for Outstanding Research: News. Based on that, I'd say it's the favorite to win this award, although one of the previous year's winners was CNN's Ethiopia: Exposing the Hallmarks of a Genocide, which suggests that the voters might like CNN's How Iran’s Security Forces Use Rape to Quell Protests instead. Electorates have preferences and electorates matter.
Now for Outstanding Research: News, the last category in which The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer earned a nomination.
Outstanding Research: News
CNN Newsroom
The Killing of Shireen Abu Akleh CNN
FRONTLINE Afghanistan Undercover PBS
FRONTLINE, The Associated Press, SITU Research Crime Scene: Bucha PBS
The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer Horror at Kabul’s Abbey Gate CNN
The Taliban Promised Them Amnesty. Then They Executed Them The New York Times
Trafficked with Mariana van Zeller White Supremacy National Geographic
VICE News Tonight Undercover in Guyana Vice
The nominees with nominations in other categories are Trafficked with Mariana van Zeller's White Supremacy for Outstanding Crime and Justice Coverage and Outstanding Editing: News, FRONTLINE's Afghanistan Undercover and Crime Scene: Bucha for Outstanding Investigative News Coverage: Long Form, The New York Times's The Taliban Promised Them Amnesty. Then They Executed Them for Outstanding News Discussion & Analysis: Editorial and Opinion, and VICE News Tonight's Undercover in Guyana for Outstanding Business, Consumer or Economic Coverage. Based on the total number of nominations, I'm picking Trafficked with Mariana van Zeller's White Supremacy to win.

I return to the press release for Barbara Kopple's accomplishments.
Barbara Kopple is a two-time Academy Award winner and holds the distinction of being the only woman to have won twice in the Oscars’ Best Documentary category. She is also a seven-time Emmy nominated filmmaker. A director and producer of documentaries, narrative films, and commercial spots, she most recently completed the documentary “Gumbo Coalition,” which follows visionary Civil Rights Leaders, Marc Morial and Janet Murguia. She has also directed and produced upwards of fifty films throughout her career, including “Desert One” about the daring US Special Ops mission during the Iranian Hostage Crisis, “New Homeland,” documenting a group of refugee children from Syria and Iraq who experience a summer camp in the Canadian wilderness, “A Murder In Mansfield,” “This Is Everything: Gigi Gorgeous,” “Miss Sharon Jones!,” “Hot Type: 150 Years of The Nation,” “Running from Crazy,” “Woodstock: Now and Then,” “Wild Man Blues, “Shut Up and Sing,” “A Conversation with Gregory Peck,” as well as her two Academy Award winning films, “Harlan County USA” and “American Dream.” In 1991, “Harlan County USA” was named to the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress and designated an American Film Classic.
Congratulations to both Blitzer and Kopple!

That concludes the first Sunday entertainment feature of September 2023. Stay tuned for Labor Day.

Previous posts about the 2023 News & Documentary Emmy Awards

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