Acorn TV’s 2020 Primetime Emmy Contenders

As you’re spending more time at home, please consider watching Acorn TV’s 2020 Emmy submissions and keep them in mind for your Emmy stories. Acorn TV offers an entertaining escape to highly entertaining, award-worthy shows from around the world.

Acorn TV is excited to announce its 2020 contenders, leading off with Limited Series Dead Still, a darkly comic drama starring Michael Smiley (Luther, who played hacker Benny “Deadhead” Silver) and set in 1880s Ireland in the Victorian era of “post-mortem photography.” For TV Movie, Acorn TV submits witty mystery Agatha Raisin and the Haunted House starring Ashley Jensen (Ugly Betty, Extras) as the fun and fashionable country sleuth. Our first Hosted Nonfiction contender is Martin Clunes’ Islands of America featuring the charming star of Doc Martin. For Drama Series, Acorn TV features second seasons of British crime drama London Kills, Irish family drama Blood starring Adrian Dunbar, and record-breaking BBC Wales drama Keeping Faith starring Eve Myles.

Acorn TV is the first specialized streamer with a Primetime Emmy program nomination (Agatha Christie’s Poirot, 2015 Outstanding TV Movie) as well as a 2019 nomination for Outstanding Narrator for Juliet Stevenson’s work on the Acorn TV commissioned Queens of Mystery.


All contenders available in full on the Acorn TV Press Site:

Images of Emmy contenders:

Please watch and consider Acorn TV’s 2020 contenders in your Emmy coverage/picks. Further details on them are below. -Chad Campbell/Acorn TV

2020 Submissions:


Dead Still

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12 categories also including Lead Actor, Production Design, Cinematography, Period Costumes, Directing, Hairstyling, Main Title Theme Music, and more

Award-Winning Actor Michael Smiley (Luther, Benny “Deadhead” Silver) stars in macabre dramedy inspired by the real life “post-mortem photography” trend in 1880s-era Ireland. The Acorn TV Original series follows the strange adventures of renowned 1880s Dublin memorial photographer Brock Blennerhasset (Smiley) and his loyal assistant Conall Molloy (Kerr Logan, Game of Thrones, Victoria), as they visit grieving families to take portraits of the recently deceased, while an overenthusiastic detective investigates a series of local murders and eyes possible disturbing connections between them and Brock. (6 Eps., Premieres May 18)


Martin Clunes’ Islands of America

4 categories also including Cinematography, Directing and Picture Editing

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“Clunes is a lovable travel companion… an inspired choice to explore the United States”The Independent

“Infectiously enthusiastic”The Telegraph

Fun new travelogue hosted by fan favorite Martin Clunes (Doc Martin, Manhunt). In this gorgeously shot 4-part new docuseries, Clunes embarks on an epic journey around the coast of America to discover what life is like on the surrounding islands. (4 Eps., Premiered June 2019)


Agatha Raisin and the Haunted House

8 categories also including Lead Actress (Emmy and BAFTA-nominated actress Ashley Jensen, Catastrophe, Extras, Ugly Betty), Supporting Actor (Mathew Horne, Gavin & Stacey), Directing, Casting and Writing

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“The sleuthing skills of a Jessica Fletcher (Murder She Wrote) and the slapstick comedy of Lucille BallTribune News Service

Based on MC Beaton’s bestselling novels, Agatha Raisin is a stylish, funny, and unorthodox sleuth, whobecomes entangled in mischief, mayhem, and murder in the English countryside. No ghosts or paranormal spirits are a match for Agatha Raisin’s resourceful instincts, street-smart savvy or her uproarious antics in last year’s Halloween-themed movie. (Premiered Oct. 2019)


Keeping Faith, Series 2

5 categories including Lead Actress, Writing, Directing and Picture Editing

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Big Little Lies crossed with Broadchurch… must stream tv… tour de force (for Eve Myles)” Decider

If you liked Broadchurch, you’ll love Keeping Faith.”Bustle

With its breathtaking scenery and addictive plot, BAFTA-winning actress Eve Myles (Torchwood, Broadchurch, Victoria) returns as Faith Howells, a lawyer, wife and mother, as she reels from the sudden disappearance of her husband and aftermath of Series 1. Winner of three BAFTA Cymru awards including Best Actress and Best Writer, the series also broke records for attracting 10 million views on the BBC iPlayer. (6 Eps., Premiered August 2019)

Blood, Series 2

5 categories including Lead Actor, Writing, Directing and Picture Editing

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“Dark, addictive and unmissable crime drama” —The Guardian
“Must-see TV…taut, stylish, and suspenseful” —
Irish Times
The acclaimed Irish psychological drama returns featuring BAFTA nominee Adrian Dunbar (Superintendent Ted Hastings in UK’s 2019 #1 cop drama Line of Duty, Broken, The Crying Game) as Jim Hogan, a once-respected, tormented ex-doctor in a small Irish town (6 Eps., Premiered March 2020)

London Kills, Series 2

8 categories including Lead Actor, Lead Actress, Directing, and Writing

WATCH NOW: Season 1 Recap or watch on press site (click register if not signed up)

“Superb British crime series… wonderfully nuanced… refreshing break from…American counterparts.” Los Angeles Times

“One of Britain’s most thrilling series is back for its second season” –Entertainment Weekly

Hugo Speer (The Full Monty, Father Brown), Sharon Small (Inspector Lynley Mysteries, Trust Me), Bailey Patrick (Bodyguard), and Tori Allen-Martin star as a team of top murder detectives in the world’s most recognizable city. The five-part series focuses on a different murder each episode, following the detectives as they uncover the truth behind the killing and an ongoing story involving the lead detective’s missing wife. (5 Eps., Premiered July 2019)

A full list of categories for each series is available upon request. Please watch and consider our Emmy contenders.

-Chad Campbell,

Acorn TV