Daytime Emmy Awards

The Daytime Emmy Awards, or Daytime Emmys, are part of the extensive range of Emmy Awards for artistic and technical merit for the American television industry. Bestowed by the New York–based National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS), the Daytime Emmys are presented in recognition of excellence in American daytime television programming. The first ceremony was held in 1974, expanding what was originally a prime time-themed Emmy Award. Ceremonies generally are held in May or June.

Daytime Emmy Award
Current: 49th Daytime Emmy Awards
Awarded forExcellence in daytime television
CountryUnited States
Presented byNATAS/ATAS
First awardedMay 21, 1974 (1974-05-21)


The first Emmy Award ceremony took place on January 25, 1949. The first daytime-themed Emmy Awards were given out at the Primetime Emmy Awards ceremony in 1972, when The Doctors and General Hospital were nominated for Outstanding Achievement in a Daytime Drama. That year, The Doctors won the first Best Show Daytime Emmy. In addition, the award for Outstanding Achievement by an Individual in a Daytime Drama was given to Mary Fickett from All My Children. A previous category "Outstanding Achievement in Daytime Programming" was added once in 1968 with individuals like Days of Our Lives star Macdonald Carey nominated. Due to voting rules of the time, judges could opt to either award one or no Emmy, and in the end they decided that no one nominated was deserving of the golden statuette. This snub outraged then-Another World writer Agnes Nixon, causing her to write in The New York Times, "...after viewing the recent fiasco of the Emmy awards, it may well be considered a mark of distinction to have been ignored by this group."[1]

Longtime General Hospital star John Beradino became a leading voice to have daytime talent honored with special recognition for their work. The first separate awards show made just for daytime programming was broadcast in 1974 from the Channel Gardens at Rockefeller Center in New York. The hosts that year were Barbara Walters and Peter Marshall. For years, the gala was held in New York, usually at nearby Radio City Music Hall, with occasional broadcasts from Madison Square Garden. In 2006, the Daytime Emmys was moved to the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles, the first time they had ever been held outside of New York.[2] The Kodak Theatre also hosted the 2007 and 2008 ceremonies, before it was moved again in 2009 to the Orpheum Theatre across town. In 2010 and 2011, the Daytime Emmys were instead held in Las Vegas. From 2012 onward, the Daytime Emmys have been held at various venues in Los Angeles, never to return again to New York (most likely as a reflection of the current state of American daytime dramas, where all New York-produced network soap operas have since been cancelled, and the ones left on the air are being recorded in Los Angeles).

Due to the relatively small talent pool in daytime television, it has become common for the same people to be nominated repeatedly. The most infamous of these is All My Children star Susan Lucci, whose name became synonymous with being nominated for an award and never winning, after having been nominated 18 times without receiving an award before finally winning a Daytime Emmy for Best Actress in 1999.[3]

In 2003, in response to heavy criticism of bloc voting in favor of shows with the largest casts, an additional voting round was added to all the drama acting categories.[4] Known as the "pre-nominations", one or two actors from each show is selected to then move on and be considered for the primary nominations for the awards.[5]

With the rise of cable television in the 1980s, cable programs first became eligible for the Daytime Emmys in 1989.[6] In 2013, in response to All My Children being moved from broadcast to streaming television, NATAS began accepting nominations to web-only series.[7] The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (ATAS) also began accepting original online-only streaming television programs in 2013.[8]

In October 2019, as part of several initiatives regarding gender identity, the NATAS decided to replace both the younger actor and actress in a drama categories with a single gender-neutral one for 2020.[9]

The 47th Daytime Emmy Awards were postponed to June 26, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the traditional in-person ceremony being replaced by a television special featuring remote appearances, and the announcement of winners in leading categories.[10]

In December 2021, the ATAS and NATAS announced major realignments to the Emmy Awards, accounting for the growth of streaming services by aligning their categories and the ceremonies' scopes around factors such as the themes and frequency of such programming, rather than dayparts. This resulted in most dramas (besides soap operas) now falling exclusively under the scope of the Primetime Emmy Awards, and categories for children's television being spun out into the newly-established Children's and Family Emmy Awards.[11][12]


Among the Daytime Emmy rules, a show must originally air on American television during the eligibility period between January 1 and December 31. Historically, in order to be considered a national daytime show, the program was required to air between 2 a.m. and 6 p.m., and to at least 50 percent of the country.[13] Shows in syndication, whose air times vary between media markets, could either be entered in the Daytime or Primetime Emmys (provided they still reach the 50 percent national reach), but not in both.[14] Game shows that reached the 50 percent threshold could be entered into the Daytime Emmys if they normally aired before 8 p.m.; otherwise, they were only eligible for the Primetime Emmys.[13]

Web television shows, must be available for downloading or streaming to more than 50 percent of the country, and like shows in syndication they can only enter in one of the national Emmy competitions. A show that enters into the Daytime Emmys cannot also be entered into the Primetime Emmy Awards or any other national Emmy competition. Entries must be submitted by late December. Most award categories also require entries to include DVDs or tape masters of the show. For example, most series categories require the submitted DVD to include any one or two episodes that originally aired during the eligibility period.[13]

Voting is done by peer judging panels. Any active Academy member, who has national credits for at least two years and within the last five years, is eligible to be a judge. Depending on the category, voting is done using either a ratings score criteria or a preferential scoring system.[13]

As of the 49th edition, eligibility for the Daytime Emmy Awards is now based on factors such as thematics and broadcasting frequency, with certain categories having been moved to other Emmy presentations. In particular:[11][12]

  • Only daytime serial dramas—defined as an episodic, multi-camera drama that airs on a weekday basis, or a reboot or spin-off of such a series—are eligible for drama awards at the Daytime Emmy Awards. All other scripted comedies and dramas now fall under the ATAS and Primetime Emmy Awards, regardless of scheduling.
  • Programming targeting viewers aged 15 and younger were spun out into the new Children's and Family Emmy Awards, also organized by the NATAS.
  • Talk shows are divided between the Daytime and Primetime Emmy Awards based on "format and style characteristics reflective of current programming in the daytime or late night space".
  • Categories for game shows and instructional/do it yourself (DIY) programming remained split between the Daytime and Primetime Emmy Awards for 2022, pending realignment in 2023.
  • Categories for morning shows were moved to the News & Documentary Emmy Awards.


The show originally aired during the daytime hours (except for the 1983 and 1984 awards, which weren't televised) but moved to primetime in 1991. For many years, the show was produced by one of its own Lifetime Achievement honorees, Dick Clark. Each show from 2006 to 2008 was produced by White Cherry Entertainment.

NBC often aired special primetime episodes of its soaps (such as Another World: Summer Desire) as a lead-in to the ceremony. In 2002, 2005, and 2007, CBS aired special primetime editions of The Price Is Right as a lead-in (the first of which tying into its then-host Bob Barker being host of the ceremony, and the last being a primetime encore of his final episode as host, which aired earlier in the day).

In August 2009, The CW broadcast the Daytime Emmys for the first time, due to the other networks declining to carry it (at the time the network did have one daytime program, Judge Jeanine Pirro). The airing delivered the ceremony's lowest ratings ever (0.6/2 in 18–49, 2.72m),[15] but it did outperform The CW's weak averages on the night that summer. The second time around, Associated Television International brought the 37th Daytime Emmy Awards to CBS, as well as the 38th, the following year. On May 3, 2012, it was announced and confirmed that HLN would air the 39th ceremony on June 23, 2012.[16] In that ceremony, an additional non-Emmy award was awarded by the program's social media partner, AOL, for Best Viral Video Series. With 912,000 viewers (not counting four repeat broadcasts which brought the total to 2 million), the broadcast was "the most watched regularly scheduled, non-news telecast" ever on HLN, but by far the least-watched Daytime Emmy ceremony ever.[17]

For the first time in the event's four-decade history, the 2014 Daytime Emmy ceremony was not broadcast on TV and instead aired only online,[18] but the Daytime Awards telecast eventually returned to television the following year thanks to a two-year deal with basic cable channel Pop.[19] However, for 2016, the Academy announced that ceremony would not be televised for the second time, citing the "current climate for awards shows".[20]

In 2020, the remotely-produced "virtual" ceremony for the 47th Daytime Emmy Awards aired on CBS, marking its return to both broadcast TV and CBS for the first time since 2011.[10] On April 1, 2021, the NATAS subsequently announced a two-year deal with CBS, covering the 48th and 49th Daytime Emmy Awards.[21]

Award categories

Daytime Emmys

Daytime Emmys are awarded in the following categories:

  • Outstanding Drama Series
  • Outstanding Talk Show – Entertainment
  • Outstanding Talk Show – Informative
  • Outstanding Legal/Courtroom Program
  • Outstanding Culinary Program
  • Outstanding Entertainment News Program
  • Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show Host
  • Outstanding Informative Talk Show Host
  • Outstanding Culinary Host

Daytime Creative Arts Emmys

Creative Arts Emmy Awards are awarded in the following categories:

Art Direction
  • Art Direction/Set Direction/Scenic Design for a Drama or Daytime Fiction Program
  • Art Direction/Set Decoration/Scenic Design for a Series
  • Casting for a Drama or Daytime Fiction program
  • Costume Design for a Drama Series
  • Costume Design/Styling for a Series
  • Directing in a Lifestyle/Culinary/Travel Program
  • Directing in a Talk Show/Morning Program
  • Special Class Directing
  • Multiple Camera Editing for a Drama Series
  • Multiple Camera Editing for a Series
  • Single Camera Editing for a Series
  • Hairstyling for a Drama Series
  • Hairstyling for a Series
Lighting Direction
  • Lighting Direction for a Drama Series
  • Lighting Direction for a Series
Main Title and Graphic Design
  • Makeup for a Drama Series
  • Makeup for a Series
  • Music Direction and Composition for a Drama Series
  • Music Direction and Composition for a Series
  • Original Song – Drama
  • Original Song for a Series
  • Original Song – Main Title and Promo
  • Host in a Lifestyle/Travel Program
  • Outstanding Lifestyle Program
  • Outstanding Special Class Series
  • Outstanding Special Class Special
  • Outstanding Special Class – Short Format Daytime Program
  • Outstanding Travel Program
Promotional Announcement
  • Promotional Announcement – Episodic
  • Promotional Announcement – Institutional
Sound Editing and Mixing
  • Live and Direct to Tape Sound Mixing for a Drama Series
  • Live and Direct to Tape Sound Mixing
  • Sound Mixing and Editing for a Drama or Daytime Fiction Program
  • Sound Mixing and Sound Editing
  • Sound Editing – Live Action
  • Sound Mixing – Live Action
Stunt Coordination
Technical Direction
  • Single Camera Photography
  • Technical Team for a Drama Series
  • Technical Team for a Series
  • Special Class Writing

Retired categories

Individual Achievement in Animation[lower-alpha 1]
  • Music Direction and Composition for a Preschool, Children's or Animated Program[lower-alpha 1]
  • Original Song in a Children's, Young Adult or Animated Program[lower-alpha 1]
  • Original Song for a Preschool, Children's or Animated Program[lower-alpha 1]
New Approaches
  • Performer in a Children/Youth/Family Special (1989–2007)
  • Outstanding Musical Performance in a Daytime Program (2016–2019)
  • Performer in an Animated Program[lower-alpha 1]
  • Performer in a Preschool Animated Program[lower-alpha 1]
  • Performer in a Children's Series[lower-alpha 1]
  • Younger Performer in a Children's Program[lower-alpha 1]
Sound Editing and Mixing
  • Film Sound Editing (1985–1995)
  • Film Sound Mixing (1985–1995)
  • Sound Editing (1996–2002)
  • Sound Mixing (1996–2002)
  • Sound Editing – Special Class (1996–2002)
  • Sound Mixing – Special Class (1996–2002)
  • Sound Editing – Live Action or Animation (2003–2011)
  • Sound Mixing – Live Action or Animation (2003–2011)
  • Sound Mixing and Sound Editing for a Animated Program[lower-alpha 1]
  • Sound Mixing and Sound Editing for a Preschool Animated Program[lower-alpha 1]
  • Sound Editing – Animation[lower-alpha 1]
  • Sound Editing for a Preschool Animated Program[lower-alpha 1]
  • Sound Mixing – Animation[lower-alpha 1]
  • Sound Mixing for a Preschool Animated Program[lower-alpha 1]
Spanish programming/talent
  1. Replaced in 2022 by similar category(ies) in the Children's & Family Emmy Awards
  2. Replaced in 2022 by similar category(ies) in the Primetime Emmy Awards
  3. Moved in 2023 to the Primetime Emmy Awards
  4. Replaced in 2022 by similar category(ies) in the News & Documentary Emmy Awards
  5. Replaced in 2008 by the current separated Entertainment and Informative categories
  6. Replaced in 2020 by the current gender-neutral Younger Performer category
  7. In 2022, non-English programs became eligible in the existing award categories



No.Air dateNetworkHousehold
18thJune 27, 1991CBS13.518.9
19thJune 23, 1992NBC15.320.2
20thMay 26, 1993ABC16.422
21stMay 25, 199414.118.9
22ndMay 19, 1995NBC10.213.7
23rdMay 22, 1996CBS11.415.1
24thMay 21, 1997ABC11.815.9
25thMay 15, 1998NBC10.213
26thMay 21, 1999CBS10.414.2
27thMay 19, 2000ABC9.113
28thMay 18, 2001NBC7.910.3
29thMay 17, 2002CBS6.910.1
30thMay 16, 2003ABC6.38.6
31stMay 21, 2004NBC68.4
32ndMay 20, 2005CBS5.57.6
33rdApril 28, 2006ABC4.56.1
34thJune 15, 2007CBS5.98.3
35thJune 20, 2008ABC45.4
36thAugust 30, 2009The CW22.7[23]
37thJune 27, 2010CBS3.85.6
38thJune 19, 20113.75.5[24]
39thJune 23, 2012HLNN/A2 (cumulative of original show and 4 same-night reruns)[25]
40thJune 16, 2013N/A1.8
41stJune 22, 2014(Internet Broadcast)N/AN/A
42ndApril 26, 2015POPN/A9
43rdMay 1, 2016YouTube, Facebook,
44thApril 30, 2017N/A0.295
45thApril 29, 2018YouTube, Facebook,
Periscope, KNEKT-TV
46thMay 5, 2019YouTube, Facebook,
47thJune 26, 2020CBS0.33.1
48thJune 25, 20210.22.4
49thJune 24, 2022[26]0.22.9

See also


  1. Eckhardt Nixon, Agnes: "They're Happy to Be Hooked" The New York Times, 7 July 1968 :D13.
  2. "The Daytime Emmys Go Hollywood!" Archived 2005-10-13 at the Wayback Machine] 9 September 2005
  3. de Moraes, Lisa (2006-07-06). "For the Primetime Emmys, a Series of Changes". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 2012-11-06. Retrieved 2008-08-26.
  4. "Emmy nominations process changed to level the field". Soapcentral. 2003-03-12. Archived from the original on 2009-06-05. Retrieved 2010-03-15.
  5. "2010 Daytime Emmy Pre-Nominations Announced". Soap Opera Digest. Retrieved 2010-03-15. Those are the names put forth by each show for consideration to be nominated for the awards.
  6. "NBC's 'Santa Barbara' Is Top Daytime Emmy Winner". Los Angeles Times. 1989-06-30. Archived from the original on 2015-09-23. Retrieved 2015-09-22. In the first year that they were eligible for Daytime Emmys, cable programs did not win any during Thursday's ceremonies. But the cable industry had picked up four of the golden statuettes at the non-televised [Creative Arts Emmy Award] event last Saturday
  7. "NATAS Hopes to Make 40th Daytime Emmys a Winner". 2012-12-24. Archived from the original on 2015-09-23. Retrieved 2015-09-22.
  8. "Netflix Does Well in 2013 Primetime Emmy Nominations". The New York Times. 2013-07-18. Archived from the original on 2013-07-21. Retrieved 2013-07-18.
  9. "Daytime Emmys Combine Young Performer Categories, Clarify Gender Identity Rules". Variety. October 31, 2019. Archived from the original on November 5, 2019. Retrieved November 13, 2019.
  10. Hipes, Patrick (May 20, 2020). "Daytime Emmys To Air Live Virtual Ceremony On CBS In June; Nominations Coming Thursday". Deadline Hollywood. United States: Penske Media Corporation. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  11. Hill, Libby (2021-12-14). "Television Academies Announce Overhaul of Primetime and Daytime Emmy Award Categories". IndieWire. Archived from the original on 2021-12-14. Retrieved 2021-12-15.
  12. Andreeva, Nellie (2021-12-14). "Emmys: Primetime & Daytime Awards Get Realigned Based On Genre Not Airtime; Dramas, Talk Shows & Game Shows Impacted". Deadline. Archived from the original on 2021-12-14. Retrieved 2021-12-15.
  13. "39th Daytime Emmys Rules and Procedures". National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. Archived from the original on 2012-03-01. Retrieved 2012-02-29.
  14. "63rd Primetime Emmys Rules and Procedures" (PDF). Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-08-15. Retrieved 2012-03-02. Syndicated programs that have reached a cumulative audience of at least 50% of the total potential U.S. television audience during the eligibility period, but not 50% exclusively in Daytime or Primetime, may enter either in Daytime or Primetime, but not in both
  15. "Pigskin's kicking in" Variety, 1 September 2009
  16. "Daytime Emmy Update". Soap Opera Digest. 2012-05-03. Archived from the original on 2012-05-06. Retrieved 2012-05-03.
  17. de Moraes, Lisa (2012-06-25). "Daytime Emmy Awards' 912,000 viewers sets record for HLN and franchise — high and low, respectively". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 2012-07-05. Retrieved 2012-08-04.
  18. "Daytime Emmys to Be Streamed Online". Broadcasting & Cable. 2014-06-05. Archived from the original on 2014-06-08. Retrieved 2014-06-23.
  19. Andreeva, Nellie (2015-03-02). "Daytime Emmy Awards Return To TV With Multi-Year Deal At Pop". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on 2015-05-02. Retrieved 2015-05-21.
  20. "No Televised Awards Ceremony for Daytime Emmys". Broadcasting & Cable. 24 March 2016. Archived from the original on 27 March 2016. Retrieved 25 March 2016.
  21. Pedersen, Erik (2021-04-01). "Daytime Emmys: CBS & NATAS Ink Two-Year Broadcast Deal For Awards Show". Deadline. Archived from the original on 2021-04-01. Retrieved 2021-04-02.
  22. Record low ratings loom for Daytime Emmy Awards - Ratings Archived 2014-02-18 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on 2014-05-11.
  23. Daytime Emmy Awards draws record-low 2.68 million on CW - Ratings Archived 2014-02-18 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on 2014-05-11.
  24. Sunday Final Ratings: Miss USA, Daytime Emmy Awards - Ratings Archived 2014-02-04 at the Wayback Machine. (2011-06-21). Retrieved on 2014-05-11.
  25. HLN's Live Broadcast of the 39th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards Garners 912,000 Total Viewers and 327,000 Among Adults 25-54 - Ratings Archived 2014-02-18 at the Wayback Machine. (2012-06-25). Retrieved on 2014-05-11.
  26. ""The 49th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards" to Be Broadcast Friday, June 24, on CBS" (Press release). CBS. April 26, 2022 via The Futon Critic.
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