From the moment of its debut five years ago, audiences haven’t stopped raving about Hamilton, the musical from Lin-Manuel Miranda which tells the story of American founding father Alexander Hamilton. The musical has won multiple Tony Awards, as well as a Pulitzer and a Grammy, and now that the filmed version of the production has debuted on Disney+, many have been talking about the chances that Hamilton could be headed to the Oscars.
Although the COVID-19 pandemic has changed more than a few rules for the Academy Awards, it’s unfortunately still not enough for Hamilton to qualify. According to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, “Recorded stage productions are not eligible for consideration.” While Hamilton may not be adding an Oscar to its trophy case, there is a chance that it could bring an Emmy Award into the fold. According to Variety, Hamilton will be eligible for Emmy consideration in 2021, but it will have to enter the Outstanding Variety Special (Pre-Recorded) category and not the Television Movie category. Per the TV Academy rules, “Programs exclusively originated for or derived/adapted from a medium other than television or broadband (e.g. taped concert tour performance, Broadway play, opera, night club act), and entertainment components of sports programs (e.g. halftime show) are eligible as appropriate in variety special (live) or variety special (pre-recorded).” This also means that despite the talented actors featured in Hamilton, any performance awards would be limited to the “primary performer,” which in the case of Hamilton, would probably be Lin-Manuel Miranda. The rules state that “the principal host for variety series and the principal host/performer for variety specials are eligible to be entered with the program categories. Secondary performers are not eligible.“
Although Hamilton may not be bringing in the big awards for Disney+, the streaming service has to be pleased with the film as it’s translated to some big numbers. According to analytics from Apptopia, the Disney+ app has been downloaded 752,451 times globally (458,766 times in the U.S.), and although it’s hard to say how many new subscribers are included in that number, that’s a 72.4% increase when compared to the average number of downloads in the four weekends in June. Have you caught Hamilton on Disney+ yet?