Apple TV+’s The Morning Show took home one Emmy award at Sunday night’s 72nd Emmys. Actor Billy Crudup won the category of “best supporting actor in a drama series” for his performance as eccentric network executive Cory Ellison.
Crudup saw off competition from Succession, Better Call Saul, The Handmaid’s Tale, Westworld and, err, The Morning Show (fellow actor Mark Duplass, who plays Charlie Black). This is Apple TV+’s first Primetime Emmy Award.
The Morning Show was the only Apple TV+ show nominated at last night’s Emmys. It also received nominations in these categories: best directing for a drama series, lead actress in a drama series, lead actor in a drama series and guest actor in a drama series.
The big winners at the Emmys were Schitt’s Creek, Watchmen and Succession. The low-key ceremony was held virtually, via Zoom.
An Emmy for The Morning Show
Apple TV+ execs reportedly made winning awards a big part of their strategy. According to a 2019 report, Apple hired a team of people with awards strategy experience to help it craft award-winning campaigns. Netflix, which laid out the blueprint for successful video on demand services, began hoovering up awards virtually the moment it started producing original content around 2013.
Awards don’t necessarily equal profit, of course. But it can help companies attract more top-name talent which, in theory, leads to higher quality shows. It also creates good publicity.
Apple has yet to reveal any hard numbers about its Apple TV+ service. It has yet to announce subscriber numbers (something that’s already confusing with the free subscription giveaway with new devices, and will only become more confusing with the arrival of Apple One), or individual viewership for different shows.
However, The Morning Show looks to be a success for Apple both commercially and critically. On Rotten Tomatoes, The Morning Show has a 93% audience score from more than 1,500 reviews. While the critical score is only 61% from 104 reviews, The Morning Show has so far been Apple’s biggest award winner. Star Jennifer Aniston earned a Screen Actors Guild award in January for the show. Billy Crudup also previously won a Critics Choice Award for best-supporting actor.
A second season of the show is currently underway. It reportedly had to be substantially rewritten to accommodate the coronavirus pandemic into the plotline.