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Emmy Boycott a Dud

May 25, 1964 - The boycott against the Emmy Awards was a dud tonight. Although the CBS and ABC networks officially “walked out” on the 16th annual awards show of the beleaguered National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, not a single golden statuette was left unclaimed.

The awards, presented during a 90-minute telecast over NBC, were made before 4,000 persons at the World’s Fair Music Hall and the Hollywood Palladium.

CBS captured most of the Emmys, 13. NBC got nine and ABC five.

But ABC won the most coveted — program of the year. This went to the brilliant study of the election of John F. Kennedy — “Making of the President 1960,” based on Theodore White’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book.

Other top winners were “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” with five Emmys, and the Danny Kaye variety show, with four.

Comedians and winners alike drew laughs with jibes about the boycott.

Chet Huntley, stroking the golden Emmy he and David Brinkley won for news reporting, quipped: “We will take this somewhat maligned and slandered young lady and try and give her a good home.” They work for NBC.

Johnny Carson said he had trouble getting to the ceremony because of a freeway “stall-in” by CBS president James Aubrey and ABC president Tom Moore.

The academy took official notice of the squabble through its outgoing president, Tom Werner, who explained at length how the 6,000 members nominate and select winners.

“There has been some comment,” he understated, “by those dissatisfied with the method. There will always be this dissatisfaction in an organization with 6,000 members, but we are always ready to accept suggestions as to how this can be improved.”

Dick Van Dyke was voted best actor in a series for the first time, while his “Dick Van Dyke Show” won best comedy award for the third straight year.

And the gal who plays his wife in the series, Mary Tyler Moore, was named best actress in a series.

With five Emmys, the “Dick Van Dyke Show” was the biggest winner since Fred Astaire waltzed off with nine in 1959.

For the third successive year, “The Defenders” was pronounced the finest dramatic program of the year by academy members.

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