Emmys Live TV Virtuoso Tells All
Director Hamish Hamilton has managed Super Bowl halftimes, VMAs and the Queen. Now he faces ratings "erosion" — and the fine line between stunts and a "safe place"
There’s nothing more stressful or exhilarating than the high-wire act of live television. The Ankler Hot Seat podcast host Tatiana Siegel welcomes one of the best in the genre: Hamish Hamilton, director of the upcoming 74th Primetime Emmy Awards on Sept. 12. Londoner Hamilton has helmed some of the most memorable moments of live TV including this year’s Super Bowl halftime extravaganza, Kanye West’s interruption of Taylor Swift’s VMA win, and the London Olympics Opening Ceremony when Queen Elizabeth jumped out of a helicopter (yes, she rehearsed that move 5-6 times!). Hamilton also previews his live Beauty and the Beast with H.E.R., coming up on ABC. An Emmy nominee himself this year (for the 2022 Super Bowl), he also weighs in on two live shows he didn’t direct: the Oscar slap flap and the 2004’s Nipplegate at the Super Bowl. “You want people to be talking about your show,” says Hamilton. “On another hand, you want everybody who hits that stage, for it to be a safe place.”