Did a photo snafu cause Emmy to snub Calista Flockhart, Ellen Pompeo and Matthew Fox?
Were some shocking omissions from the Emmy top 10 lists due to the lack of a photo next to their names on the official eligibility lists (SEE HERE) that voters used as a reminder of contenders when checking off ballots? One of the most notable snubbees tells Gold Derby, "Yes!" and blames the TV academy.
The lists appeared online and did not include pix of these stars who got snubbed: Calista Flockhart ("Brothers & Sisters"), Matthew Fox ("Lost"), Kelsey Grammer ("Back to You"), Ellen Pompeo ("Grey's Anatomy") and Kate Walsh ("Private Practice"). flockhart, Fox and Pompeo made the Top 10 lists last year. Grammer and Walsh weren't eligible in this category.
Many other stars didn't have their photos posted when voting began, but scrambled to provide them and they were added later. The rep of one snubbed star claims the academy's request for a photo was not included on the entry form, but "buried" in supplemental material. The TV academy denies that. Whatever the case, there were lots of photos missing on the ballot and that might have affected the outcome.
On the first day of voting an academy member called me as he looked over the lists, which had lots and lots of missing pix at that early point. He harrumped in a very catty voice, "I don't see a photo of Matthew Fox! He lost my vote! Hey, what's up with Ellen Pompeo? Too lazy to bother, honey? Well, screw you â I'm voting for Jeanne Tripplehorn!" Clearly, that voter was putting on an exaggerated act for comic effect, but there was obvious truth to his tantrum. When looking over those loooooong lists, your eye obviously goes to ones with photos.
Although that didn't hurt some big-name contenders. None of these stars posted pix, but they made the top 10 runoffs: Patrick Dempsey ("Grey's Anatomy"), James Spader ("Boston Legal"), Mariska Hargitay ("Law & Order: SVU"), Charlie Sheen ("Two and a Half Men"), Holly Hunter ("Saving Grace"), and Eva Longoria ("Desperate Housewives").
A rep for one of the snubbed stars cited above insists, "There was no mention of the requirement of a photo on the two-page entry form, although that form does mention the need for contenders to submit a DVD, episode info, payments, etc. â in other words, most other key details. The photo requirement is buried on page 40 of the 69-page rules book."
When I asked the TV academy for a response, a spokesman said: "In the instructions included with the entry form: 'Performer Awards (Unless otherwise specified below, DVDs and Headshots are due at the time of entry. Please refer to the rules and procedures for specific instructions.' When the producers proofs were sent out for final ballot adjustments, entrants without headshots were noted and requests were made for the photos.
"The Emmy Rules printed book is 146 pages. The performer category begins on page 91 and on page 92 a boxed note in bold immediately follows a brief introductory paragraph under the section heading 'Performer Awards.' On page 40 of the online rules book, which was the first page of the performer rules, again the information regarding the headshot matter is boldface type in a box. It is in a prominent place in both sections.
"We continued accepting and posting headshots on the ballot site after the final deadline for entries (April 21) and the deadline for the return of the producers proof (May 27). There was a two-day period after the ballots were posted during the week of June 2 when the mailbox for the headshot e-mails was filled. Emmy contenders were made aware through a bounced back e-mail that the mailbox was full. We then rectified the problem immediately."