O.J.: Made In America made waves when it was first aired, with some critics hailing it as one of the most important televised documentaries they'd ever seen. The five episode, seven hour series detailed the life and times of O.J. Simpson, a public figure who has caused intense debate over the years thanks to the murder trial at the heart of his story. Directed by Ezra Feldman, the documentary delves into Simpson's life before, during, and after the trial that defined him, providing new insight into a story that's two decades old. There was so much buzz that it seemed certain the series would be earning its fair share of awards. So why isn't O.J.: Made In America nominated for an Emmy?
It actually has nothing to do with the series itself; it's just a matter of timing. To be eligible for an Emmy nomination, a show has to have aired within a specific window of time and O.J.: Made In America missed the cutoff. The 2016 Emmys covers shows that ran between June 1, 2015 and May 31, 2016, and O.J.: Made In America aired in June of 2016. So even though it missed out this time around, it'll be able to earn all those noms come next year – and maybe even grab more than an Emmy.
Though it was intended for television, there is a chance that O.J.: Made In America could receive an Oscar nomination, which would be a first for a television show. The series ran in its entirety in theaters on May 20 and that could make it eligible for an Oscar nom despite the fact that it was made for the medium of television. Its length and episodic nature made it excel in the format, but if a loophole could land it an Oscar, why not?
Whether or not O.J.: Made In America ends up accruing the accolades it so clearly deserves, renewed interest in the case will likely have an impact on this year's Emmys anyway. Though the documentary wasn't nominated, the fictional series that was also inspired by the case (American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson) is sure to land itself a few nominations. The two series have brought the Simpson murder trial back into the public eye in a big way, so it's almost certain that the 2016 Emmys will feature the case in some capacity.
It's unfortunate that there won't be any instant gratification when it comes to seeing O.J.: Made In America rack up the awards, but don't worry: its time will come, and it'll be just as deserving this time next year as it is right now.