Netflix original series’ received 14 Emmy nominations for the 2013 Emmys. Netflix is the first digitally distributed outlet to score an Emmy nomination in the series categories, with House of Cards nominated for Best Drama and Arrested Development‘s Jason Bateman nominated for Best Actor.
Netflix’s chief content officer, Ted Sarandos, is ecstatic about this development. “Big change usually comes very slowly,” he told Vulture. “House of Cards, the way it came together, releasing all the episodes at once… those are big changes. A single nomination in any category would have been a victory.” While a single nomination would have sufficed, Netflix shows House of Cards and Arrested Development both landed in the big categories, while horror series Hemlock Grove got some tech nominations.
This development breaks through a boundary: the TV Academy did not even allow cable shows to be nominated for Emmys until 1988. Once it did, it was five years before HBO’s the Larry Sanders Show became the first cable show to get a series nomination, and fourteen years until Michael Chiklis became the first actor to win an Emmy for a basic cable show. It is very impress that Netflix received 14 nominations during only their second year of creating original series.
“We went after it, for sure,” Sarandos says. “We did everything you’re supposed to do, and I think we did it well — including the facilitation of the creation of great television. Netflix has always been about high-quality entertainment, and this should be a reinforcement of that…When [consumers] are sitting down to watch TV, we’re another channel to watch. Television is determined by what’s on the screen, not how it got there.”