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Category: Super Bowl

Will Super Bowl win with Emmy voters?

February 9, 2010 |  8:46 am

Super Bowl XLIV was the most-watched event in television history, with 106.5-million viewers tuning in Sunday to see the New Orleans Saints defeat the Indianapolis Colts 31 to 17. CBS execs now have to hope that a few among those record numbers have long memories as none of the all-day coverage of the big game is eligible to compete at the Sports Emmys till next year.

When the nominations are announced next month for the 31st anniversary edition of the Sports Emmys, it will be Super Bowl XLIII that contends. NBC carried that 2009 game in which the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Arizona Cardinals 27-13.

Fox aired the 2008 game in which the New York Giants defeated the New England Patriots 17-14. That Super Bowl lost the race for live sports special at the Emmys to NBC's coverage of the 108th U.S. Open. Although it did win for best opening/tease, the Super Bowl lost bids for both writing and graphic design.

The last time CBS aired the Super Bowl was in Feburary 2007, when the Indianapolis Colts beat the Chicago Bears 29 to 17. At the April 2008 Sports Emmys award fest, that CBS coverage lost to the Fox broadcast of the 2007 Fiesta Bowl, in which Boise State beat Oklahoma in overtime, 43 to 42. CBS had also earned two noms for "Super Bowl Today" as best long feature, as well as bids for best opening and editing.

Illustration: Tom O'Neil

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Jennifer Hudson triumphs at Super Bowl

February 2, 2009 |  2:42 pm

Jennifer Hudson sang her heart out at the Super Bowl Sunday in Tampa. And today, Jennifer Hudson's performance is being compared favorably to the emotional one delivered by Whitney Houston back in 1991 when the Super Bowl was also played in Tampa. Back then, the Gulf War had just begun and Houston's stirring rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner" was released as a single and reached the top 20 on Billboard.

Yesterday at the Super Bowl marked Jennifer Hudson's first public appearance since the tragic deaths of her mother, Darnell Donerson, her brother Jason Hudson and nephew Julian King, who were  murdered in their Chicago home Oct. 28. While there has been some hubbub surrounding the obvious fact that Jennifer Hudson lip-synced to a prerecorded track, that was at the request of musical director Rickey Minor.


Her presence and performance at the Super Bowl earned the 2006 Oscar winner ("Dreamgirls") rave reviews and could put her in the running for the Emmy Award for best individual performance in a variety special, if ruled eligible by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. The extraordinary circumstances of her appearance might prove to be akin to Bette Midler winning that same Emmy in 1992 for singing Grammy record of the year "Wind Beneath My Wings" to Johnny Carson upon his retirement from "The Tonight Show." If ruled ineligible because this was a TV sports show,  Hudson might still emerge a winner at the separate Sports Emmys.

Greg Kot of the Chicago Tribune said, "She began deliberately, then swung low to bring a chilling resonance to the word 'gleaming.' Though she stretched a few notes, she didn’t oversell the song or her voice. She reveled in its power. The final 'home of the brave' was a howitzer into the heavens." The New York Post thought she sounded "brillz" while the New York Daily News said, "Hudson redefined our national anthem last night as a statement of hope, faith and — yes — even a hint of defiance."

This coming Friday, Hudson will perform at Recording Academy's MusiCares Person of the Year gala honoring Neil Diamond. And next Sunday, she is set to perform live on the Grammy Awards, where she is competing with four nominations for her self-titled debut album.

Read more about how other Oscar winners fared singing at the Super Bowl in the past.


Jennifer Hudson sings at Super Bowl today

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Bruce Springsteen a Super Bowl winner

February 2, 2009 |  2:42 pm


Hey, Oscars voters, were you watching? Bruce Springsteen may have gotten shut out of your Super Bowl of Showbiz when you refused to nominate him for performing the title track to "The Wrestler," but he wowed viewers of that other Super Bowl, the one in Tampa Bay, with his hard-rocking half-time show. While Jennifer Hudson performed a poignant version of the national anthem that hushed the crowd in the pregame, Bruce Springsteen delivered a four-song set at half-time that set the stadium rocking. Both performances may now be nominated by Emmy Award voters next.

As the New York Daily News reported, "The Boss promised Super Bowl viewers a 12-minute party and what the Boss promises, the Boss delivers." The time constraint meant that verses from each of the songs — "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out," "Born to Run," "Working on a Dream," and "Glory Days" — had to be cut. However, that did not take away from his performance. As Rolling Stone raved, "More than 70,000 who had been jeering, heckling and cajoling each other for hours were dancing, suddenly all revelers at Bruce’s party." Even the New York Times opined: "He rose to the occasion, but never above it. And Springsteen, a reliable left-winger — when he described his band’s sound as 'righteous,' it had a splash of double-meaning grit — didn’t use his platform to advocate for anything more pressing than louder volume."

'It's not a concert, but a teaser — and it was, admittedly, an entertaining one — for Springsteen's upcoming tour," writes Todd Martens in the L.A. Times' Pop & Hiss blog.

Bruce Springsteen has had a very busy few weeks. On Jan. 11, he won the Golden Globe for his title track to the film "The Wrestler." A week later, he was a stand-out in the all-star lineup for the inaugural concert of President Barack Obama. On Jan. 22, he was snubbed by the members of the music branch of the academy when his tune did not number among the three songs that scored Oscar nominations. This omission was even more surprising given that Springsteen won an Oscar in 1993 for the song "Streets of Philadelphia" from the film "Philadelphia." And he was nominated two years later for the title song of "Dead Man Walking" but lost to "Colors of the Wind" from "Pocahontas."

Just as Jennifer Hudson was not the first Oscar winner to sing the national anthem — Cher (1987 lead actress winner, "Moonstruck") did in 1999 — so too was Springsteen not the first Oscar winner to appear in the half-time show. In 2000, Phil Collins did so just weeks before winning an Oscar for the song "You'll Be in My Heart" from "Tarzan." In 2005, Paul McCartney performed at half-time. He, along with the other three Beatles — George Harrison, John Lennon and Ringo Starr — won the 1970 original song score Oscar for "Let It Be." And two years ago, Prince — the 1984 song score winner for "Purple Rain" — headlined the half-time concert.

Photo credit: Win McNamee / Getty Images


Jennifer Hudson sings at Super Bowl today

How did Bruce Springsteen end up snubbed by the Oscars

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