It’s not every day you see a show go from being rejected for for ten years to breaking records as the most popular streaming service’s most popular program ever, but then again, not every show is the critically-acclaimed phenomenon that is Squid Game. Since it’s release on September 17, the brutal Korean drama has taken over the world, and with award season around the corner and some pretty exciting news from the Television Academy, it seems its domination has only just begun.
According to Variety, the Television Academy has officially confirmed Squid Game is eligible to participate in the Primetime Emmys. The report states that, according to an Academy spokesperson, “because Squid Game was produced under guidance from Netflix, which is an American company, and it was always intended to be distributed in the U.S., it can be entered in the Primetime Emmy race,” meaning we can probably expect to see its name pop up more and more as award season draws nearer. While this might not seem like a big deal, rest assured it really is, as the Television Academy’s formal guidelines make submitting foreign television programs a bit of a nightmare, if we’re being honest:
“Foreign television production is ineligible unless it is the result of a co-production (both financially and creatively) between U.S. and foreign partners, which precedes the start of production, and with a purpose to be shown on U.S. television. The producer of any production produced in the U.S. or outside the U.S. as a co-production between U.S. and foreign partners, in a language that is substantially (i.e. 50% or more) in a language other than English, shall have the discretion to enter the production and its individual achievements in any category where they are eligible in the Primetime Emmy Awards competition or in the awards competition of the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, but not both.”
However, since Squid Game was produced internationally, it is also eligible to enter the International Emmys. Ultimately, Netflix will have to select only one category to compete in, as Academy rules and regulations strictly prohibit entrants from participating in both. Considering how ultra-competitive the Primetime Emmys are — as well as how violence-adverse they can typically be — there’s really no telling which one Squid Game will partake in.
Variety also notes that already folks are beginning to call Squid Game “television’s Parasite” — the hit Korean film that became the first non-English film to receive the best picture Academy Award in 2020 — and are anticipating the series’ bringing home some groundbreaking awards. However, regardless of what awards Squid Game ultimately takes home, the praise the show is already receiving reflects an interesting shift in the type of content American audiences are watching, and could open the doors to even more international titles making it big in the states.