Marvel Television has been snubbed by the Television Academy many times, with their first win last year, for Jessica Jones. While the seal was broken last year, proving that voters did pay attention to the Netflix corner of the MCU, the one category where Marvel was expected to have the best shot, but still hadn’t been recognized, was reached this year, by Luke Cage.
The critically acclaimed first season of Luke Cage was awarded “Outstanding Stunt Coordination for a Drama Series, Limited Series, or Movie,” at the 2017 Creative Emmy awards. Previously, Daredevil Season Two was nominated in this category, but did not win.
This has been a particularly sad year for stunt professionals, with deaths on the sets of The Walking Dead and Deadpool 2. For this reason, there was a bit more attention on James Lew, stunt coordinator for Luke Cage when he accepted the award. While he didn’t reference the recent tragedies during his acceptance speech, he did comment on the importance of safety, backstage.
“I truly believe that the more experienced stunt coordinator,” he said, “you can give a better judgement on what you feel is not going to work story-wise, and also for danger. I like to tell producers, ‘I like to be stupid safe, because we’re only making entertainment, it’s not worth it.’”
Marvel Television has a high-quality stunt team, which brings amazing feats to life in a short schedule and at a low budget. But the stunt community is small, and many of the tragedies that have occurred this past year overlap with the teams that are used on Marvel shows. For example, Philip Silvera, who could be credited with setting the bar so high on the first season of Daredevil, is now the stunt coordinator on Deadpool 2.
Congratulations are in order for Lew and his team on Luke Cage for this Emmy, and for the culture of safety that he is encouraging. We hope that all of the stunt teams behind these series continue to be safe as they put together the amazing scenes that we will one day be watching.