Peabody Awards Change Format, Tap Keegan-Michael Key to Host

Matt Hoyle

For the first time ever, the awards will annouce 60 finalists.

The Peabody Awards are changing things up to celebrate its 75th anniversary.

For the first time ever, the awards will select 60 finalists to be announced on April 12. A group of winners — The Peabody 30 — will then be revealed by category in a succession of announcements kicking off April 19.

Keegan-Michael Key will host the ceremony, which will be held May 21 at Cipriani Wall Street in New York. Key is a previous winner, having received a Peabody for Key & Peele, which just came to an end last year. Pivot will televise the ceremony for a 90-minute special airing Monday, June 6 at 8 p.m.

"There are now more than 400 scripted primetime television shows, new locations for documentary television, a flood of podcasts and a wealth of quality digital storytelling," Peabody Awards director Jeffrey P. Jones said in a statement. "Peabody has to reflect that change in order to continue to award the best of the best, while also recognizing and highlighting this expanded field of quality media production."

The change comes one year after the awards hosted its first-ever red carpet gala, which was hosted by Fred Armisen. Winners included Jane the Virgin, Fargo, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Week Tonight With John Oliver, RectifyThe Americans, The Honorable Woman, The Knick and Mr. Dynamite: The Rise of James Brown.

The Peabody Awards recognize excellence in TV, radio and web storytelling and are based at the University in Georgia's Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication.