Netflix topped the list of media award nominations announced Thursday by the LGBTQ advocacy group GLAAD with 26, including “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” for outstanding film; “Disclosure” for outstanding documentary; and “The Umbrella Academy” for outstanding drama series.
HBO Max followed with nine nominations, and Amazon, Hulu and HBO each received four. The Hallmark Channel received its first nomination for “The Christmas House,” the network’s first holiday movie featuring a gay lead character.
GLAAD has honored filmmakers, musicians, journalists and other media creators for three decades for fair, accurate and inclusive representations of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people on screen. Its latest list includes 198 nominees across 28 categories, including outstanding comedy series, outstanding video game and outstanding TV journalism segment.
“During an unprecedented year of crises and isolation, the nominees for the 32nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards reached LGBTQ people with powerful stories and inspired countless others around the world with bold looks at LGBTQ people and issues,” GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said in a statement. “As GLAAD continues to lead the fight for LGBTQ acceptance, this year’s nominees remind us that even in times of political and cultural division, diverse LGBTQ representation and visibility can enlighten, entertain, and create lasting change.”
NBC News received three nominations: “Black Trans Activists on Being the ‘Blueprint for the Struggle for Black Freedom‘” for outstanding TV journalism segment; “Pride and Protest: Being Black and Queer in America in 2020” for outstanding TV journalism, long form; and “Trans, Imprisoned — and Trapped” for outstanding online journalism article.
In its “Where We Are on TV” report, released this month, GLAAD found that queer visibility declined by 33 percent on cable, 13 percent on streaming services and a little over 1 percent on network television in the current TV season. The organization attributes the declines to production halts due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Chris Rudolph, an editor and a producer for Logo, ViacomCBS’ LGBTQ lifestyle and entertainment channel, said that even with the decline, the queer community appears to have an array of viewing options.
“Despite the reported dip in representation, this expanded list of nominations shows us there’s an impressive range of quality content across genres, networks and platforms for LGBTQ audiences to connect with,” Rudolph told NBC News. “I remember when queer content wasn’t so plentiful and when we didn’t see these shows or characters on mainstream television. Now, even as a queer person in media, I haven’t even seen all of these titles. The decline in visibility is evidence there’s still work to be done, but the diverse list of nominees also shows us how far we’ve come.”
For the first time, GLAAD’s report on TV representation found that LGBTQ people of color outnumbered their white counterparts. And several of this year’s GLAAD award nominees are titles created by and/or star LGBTQ people of color, including Lena Waithe’s BET series “Twenties”; Hulu’s “Love, Victor”; and Fox’s “9-1-1: Lone Star,” which made history for casting the first out Black trans man, Brian Michael Smith, in a regular series role on network television.
“It’s incredible and powerful to see a Black trans actor in the lead on Fox,” Rudolph said of Smith. “People across America get to see him on their screens, and that visibility is vital for the trans community. I love that they are being recognized for that.”
Award winners will be announced during a virtual ceremony scheduled for April. The full list of nominees can be found on GLAAD’s website.