LOS ANGELES — The Latest from the Emmy Awards (all times PDT):
It looked like any awards show as Emmys host Jimmy Kimmel took the stage at the Staples Center in a tuxedo and started cracking jokes to laughter from famous audience members.
But it was anything but typical. While Kimmel was real as he opened the 72nd Emmy Awards on Sunday night, the audience was clearly phoney, inserted from past footage.
"Welcome to the pandemmies!" Kimmel said to open his monologue. "You can’t have a virus without a host."
Kimmel played it straight until halfway through the opening bit, when he admitted he was nearly alone and the telecast showed the sea of empty seats.
Nominees were represented by cardboard cutouts, and by Jason Bateman of "Ozark" pretending to be one.
Kimmel then walked into a room where he was surrounded by dozens of nominees shown on video feeds from their homes, hotel rooms and other remote locations. "I feel like I'm in a Best Buy," he joked.
It’s eerily empty both outside and inside the Staples Center in Los Angeles during the run-up to an Emmy Awards unlike any other.
At a moment when the red carpet would normally be thronged with black-tie stars, media and fans, spaced-out security and staff and a handful of show contributors were among the only people outside on Sunday afternoon.
Tracee Ellis Ross, nominated for best actress in a comedy series for "black-ish," leaned out of an arriving SUV to take a coronavirus test before entering to take part in the show.
Many other nominees are expected to take part from their homes, hotels and other remote locations.
Little else has been revealed about the 72nd Emmy Awards, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel. The show starts at 5 p.m. Pacific/8 Eastern on ABC.