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Jay-Z Wins Emmy For Directing Rihanna’s Super Bowl Halftime Show

9 January 2024 | 7:31 pm | Ellie Robinson

It comes as his second Emmy win, also earning one last year for a Super Bowl gig.

Jay-Z

Jay-Z (Supplied)

Jay-Z has bagged his second Emmy Award, taking out the gong for Outstanding Directing For A Variety Special.

He shares the accolade with Hamish Hamilton, with whom he co-directed Rihanna’s 2023 Super Bowl halftime show. In taking out the title, Hamilton and the rapper (real name Shawn Carter) won over four other nominees: Paul Miller (who was nominated for his work directing Carol Burnett’s NBC special 90 Years Of Laughter + Love), Joel Gallen (Chris Rock’s Netflix special Selective Outrage), Glenn Weiss (the 2023 Oscars ceremony) and Linda Mendoza (Wanda Sykes’ Netflix special I’m An Entertainer).

Rihanna’s historic performance aired during Super Bowl LVII on February 12, 2023, and featured such timeless hits as Bitch Better Have My Money, We Found Love, All Of The Lights and Umbrella. In addition to being widely hailed as one of the best halftime shows in Super Bowl history, it went on to become the single most-watched halftime show in US television history, drawing in more than 121 million viewers when it aired live.

The show also won a second Emmy at this year’s ceremony (which was held in LA over January 6-7), earning the award for Outstanding Production Design For A Variety Special. It was honoured to five of the people who worked on the production: Bruce Rodgers, Shelley Rodgers, Lindsey Breslauer, Lily Rodgers and Maria Garcia. The show also racked up three additional nominations: Outstanding Music Direction, Outstanding Technical Direction And Camerawork For A Special, and Outstanding Variety Special (Live).

The 2023 Super Bowl marked Rihanna’s first public performance since 2018, when she appeared alongside DJ Khaled at that year’s Grammy Awards ceremony. It was particularly notable since she’d declined an offer to perform at the iconic football match once before, in 2020, out of protest for the NFL’s deplorable treatment of player Colin Kaepernick (who famously knelt during the US national anthem at games to protest the country’s current and historical pattern of racial inequality and police brutality).

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Jay-Z won his first Emmy last year, being honoured for his role as an executive producer on that year’s Super Bowl halftime show (which starred an all-star cast of Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Mary J. Blige, Eminem, Kendrick Lamar and 50 Cent). That show won the award for Outstanding Variety Special (Live).