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Beatles 50th anniversary TV special nominated for six Emmy Awards

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In the Emmy Awards nominations announced early July 10, the Beatles TV special “The Night That Changed America” made a spectacular showing with six nominations, including Outstanding Variety Special.

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The program, broadcast in celebration of the Beatles' 50th anniversary in America, was also nominated for Outstanding Direction for a Variety Special, Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction for a Variety Special, Outstanding Music Direction, Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Variety Series or Special and Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special.

In the Outstanding Variety Special category, it's up against the “AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute To Mel Brooks” from TNT, “Best Of Late Night With Jimmy Fallon Primetime Special” from NBC, “Billy Crystal: 700 Sundays” from HBO, “The Kennedy Center Honors” on CBS, and “Sarah Silverman: We Are Miracles” on HBO. Paul McCartney also appeared in the “Best of Late Night” special for the “Scrambled Eggs” song he sang with Fallon, so he is essentially competing with himself in this category. That show received only the one nomination.

In the Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special, writers David Wild and Ken Ehrlich will be competing with “Billy Crystal: 700 Sundays,” “The 71st Annual Golden Globe Awards” on NBC, “Sarah Silverman: We Are Miracles” and “The 67th Annual Tony Awards.”

In the Outstanding Directing For a Variety Special, director Gregg Gelfand is nominated. The competition for that award is “The Kennedy Center Honors” on CBS, “The Oscars” on ABC, “Six by Sondheim” on HBO and “The Sound of Music Live!” on NBC.

For Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction For A Variety Special, the special is competing with “The Kennedy Center Honors,” “The 56th Grammy Awards,” on which Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr appeared, “The Oscars,” “Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games Opening Ceremony” on NBC “Six By Sondheim,” The Super Bowl XLVIII Halftime Show Starring Bruno Mars on Fox, and “The 67th Annual Tony Awards” on CBS.

For Outstanding Music Direction, director Don Was is up against “Barbara Streisand: Back To Brooklyn” on PBS, “The Oscars,” “Saturday Night Live” hosted by Jimmy Fallon on NBC, “The Sound of Music Live!” and “The 67th Annual Tony Awards.”

And finally, for Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Variety Series and Special in which music mixers Giles Martin and Al Schmidt, production mixers Larry Reed and Tom Holmes and re-recording mixer Josh Morton are competing with “The 56th Annual Grammy Awards,” “The Kennedy Center Honors,” “The Oscars” and “The Voice” on NBC.

Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr also appeared on another nominated show, “The 56th Annual Grammy Awards,” which was nominated for Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction For a Variety Special and Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Variety Series or Special. They'll be up for two awards in each of those categories since both include “The Beatles: The Night They Changed America” as a competing nominee.

"The Beatles: The Night That Changed America" was taped on Jan. 27, the day after "The 56th Annual Grammy Awards," and was broadcast on Feb. 9, 50 years to the day after the original broadcast of "The Ed Sullivan Show" when the Beatles made their first Sullivan appearance. The primetime special averaged 13.95 million viewers in its first airing in February and peaked at nearly 14.8 million during the final half hour on a night that included the Olympics, the winter premiere of "The Walking Dead" and other popular Sunday night cable series, according to CBS.

"This year's historic Beatles special and 56th Annual Grammy Awards telecast were spectacular musical and cultural celebrations filled with countless unique Grammy moments that recognized many extraordinary and gifted artists," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy.

Among other nominations, the “American Masters” PBS special “Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train A'Comin'” was nominated for two awards, Outstanding Sound Mixing for Nonfiction Programming and Outstanding Picture Editing for Nonfiction Programming. The awards show will air live at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT Aug. 25 on NBC.