Competition fierce for 2008 Emmys

With an avalanche of entries for the first time in a decade and 256 nominations in 57 categories ? not to mention the hundreds of individuals connected with the nominations – the Chicago/Midwest chapter kicks off the Oct. 18 50th Emmy Awards with a vengeance.

More than 700 entries were received from Academy members in Chicago and Downstate, Milwaukee and other Wisconsin markets and Northwest Indiana.

The most submissions of all TV stations came from Chicago’s Ch. 2, making up for past year losses. Its 88 entries were rewarded with 33 nominations.

Shows produced by non-station, independent production companies landed in 17 program and individual achievement categories (as best the Reel can determine from the listings on 29 single-spaced pages of nominees).

Two of these shows in the Arts/Entertainment Program category – HMS Productions, “Billy Sunday,” and Art Explorers/Brave New Pictures’ “Grannies on Safari” – are going head-to-head for the gold statuettes.

“Billy Sunday” also got two additional nods for individual achievement and “Grannies” for one.