The Television Academy announced on Wednesday that its Board of Governors has approved the elimination of the Hanging Episode Rule beginning with the 2023 Emmy competition, as recommended by the organization’s Awards Committee.
As it currently stands, the Hanging Episode Rule allows a series (including limited or anthology series) that premieres current-season episodes after the May 31 eligibility deadline, but prior to the start of nomination-round voting, to post those episodes on a platform available to Academy members by May 31 for episode eligibility in the current Emmy competition.
Beginning with the next eligibility year (June 1, 2022-May 31, 2023), the Hanging Episode Rule has been eliminated. This means that only episodes that premiere on a platform available to a national audience by May 31 will be Emmy-eligible.
Episodes of a series that debut to a national audience after the May 31 deadline will be eligible for the next Emmy window, likely with the show’s subsequent season.
If the show doesn’t return for the next season, then those episodes are considered “orphaned” and are eligible only for individual achievement categories the following year. Submission for a body of work (including series and acting categories) would not be eligible under the “orphaned” episodes rule.
The Academy has made the change to standardize all submissions within the eligibility year. In order for a series to be Emmy-eligible, six episodes must have premiered to a national audience by the May 31 deadline. For a limited series or anthology, all episodes must have debuted prior to the deadline.
Many series have taken advantage of the Hanging Episode rule in prior years. This year, two episodes of “Barry” Season 3 are airing after the eligibility deadline, but the episodes were made available to TV academy members before May 31.