Game of Thrones is always a favorite at the Emmy Awards, whether it's dominating the nominations or sweeping the wins, so it seems obvious that Season 7 would score more than a few nods. Even though the new season hasn't begun airing yet, it seems fair to assume it will match the critical success of previous ones; after so many years on the air, praise for Game of Thrones is to be expected. But there might be a teeny tiny issue that gets in the way of future award show glory. Is Game of Thrones eligible for the 2017 Emmy Awards?
Game of Thrones has won a staggering 38 Emmys in the past (with a grand total of 110 nominations), but it won't be adding to that number just yet. Season 7 isn't eligible for the 2017 Emmy Awards, unfortunately, and it's all due to an issue of timing. The upcoming season is set to premiere on July 16, which puts it outside the Emmy nomination window of eligibility, which ended on May 31. The unusually late premiere was due to filming concerns; winter has finally arrived in Westeros, so production had to wait for more snow. It was a necessary adjustment for the series, but it meant missing out on the Emmys this year.
It's certainly significant for the 2017 Emmy nominations to be missing Game of Thrones. The series has broken records with all of the Emmys it's earned over the years and the Best Drama Series hasn't been without a Game of Thrones nom since its premiere in 2011. Its lack of eligibility will also have a waterfall effect on the rest of the nominations, opening up space for shows that may not have had a chance before.
The supporting actor categories alone open up quite a lot without Game of Thrones there to dominate with its massive ensemble cast. Peter Dinklage and Kit Harington almost always see a nom each, as do Emilia Clarke, Lena Headey, and Maisie Williams; without their presence in the 2017 Emmys, those spots are open for other actors and actresses from other shows. It's a bummer for Game of Thrones to wait on its accolades, but it is nice to see the Emmy love getting spread around a little bit this year.
It's unlikely that skipping a year will have any adverse effects on Game of Thrones' future chances considering how popular the show still is. It'll just take a little break and be back, better than ever, for the 2018 Emmy Awards.