In the so-called Golden Age of television, main titles elevated into an art form all their own, with the opening sequences for shows such as Mad Men, The Sopranos and Game of Thrones all becoming iconic in their own right.

Today, it’s important for shows to have distinctive main titles as they work to grab notice in a very crowded TV landscape.

In 2020, the TV Academy nominated seven opening title sequences for outstanding main title design—with four of them created by agency Elastic—and another six for outstanding main title theme music. The sequences, where available, are below.

And the nominees for outstanding main title design are:

Outstanding Main Title Design

Netflix’s Abstract: The Art Of Design

A RadicalMedia Production in association with Tremolo Productions & Godfrey Dadich Partners

Below is the opening title sequence for the first episode of season two, which aired in 2019. This series, which premiered in 2017, offers a different sequence for each episode and each of these sequences is in the style of the designer featured in the episode.

Creative Director: Allie Fisher

Animator/Director: Anthony Zazzi

Amazon Prime Video’s Carnival Row

Produced by Legendary Pictures TV and Amazon Studios

This fantastical main-title sequence perfectly captures the vibe of this series, about a world in which magical creatures cohabitate with human beings, although not without strife.

RELATED: Fantastical Creatures Populate Amazon’s ‘Carnival Row’

Agency: Elastic

Creative Director: Lisa Bolan

Art Director: Henry DeLeon, Mert Kizilay

Designer: Kaya Thomas

Animator/Compositor: Yongsub Song

Animator: Alex Silver

Epix’s Godfather Of Harlem

Produced by ABC Signature Studios

This sequence takes viewers on a mixed-media tour through Harlem scored with uplifting choral music.

Creative Director/Editor: Mason Nicoll

Designer/Lead Animator/Art Director: Peter Pak

Designer: Giovana Pham

Animator: Cisco Torres

Apple TV+’s The Morning Show

Produced by Media Res

Adapted from Brian Stelter’s book, Top of the Morning, the Apple TV+ series tells the story of a morning news show that looks perfect on viewers’ TV screens but is actually a broiling mess of scandal behind the scenes.

Elastic got lots of attention for this simple but brilliant main-title sequence that casts colorful dots as characters from the show. The Morning Show earned Apple TV+ eight Emmy nominations, including acting nods for Jennifer Aniston, Steve Carell, Billy Crudup, Mark Duplass and Martin Short.

RELATED: Elastic Does A Lot With Dots

Agency: Elastic

Creative Director: Angus Wall, Hazel Baird

Lead Designer: Emanuele Marani

Lead Animator: EJ Kang

Animator: Peter Murphy, Erik Righetti

Netflix’s The Politician

A Fox21 Television Studios Production

The old saying goes “politicians are born not made” but Elastic’s main-title sequence for Netflix’s The Politician, starring Broadway darling Ben Platt, would beg to differ. This also marks Elastic lead animator Youngsub Song’s second Emmy nomination this year in this category.

RELATED: It Takes More Than Objects to Make a Man in Netflix’s ‘The Politician’

Agency: Elastic

Creative Director: Heidi Berg, Felix Soletic

Lead Designer: Carlo Sa

Lead Animator: Yongsub Song

3D Artist: Joe Paniagua

Editor: Rachel Fowler

HBO’s Watchmen

Produced by HBO Entertainment in association with White Rabbit, Paramount Television, Warner Bros. Television & DC Comics

Each episode of Damon Lindelof’s electric and oh-so-timely retelling of the graphic novels, Watchmen had its own quick main-title sequence that reflected the episode’s theme. Although as in all things Lindelof, that theme was rarely obvious.

Agency: Elastic

Creative Director: Paul Mitchell

Art Director: Olga Midlenko

Lead Compositor: Maciek Sokalski

Animator: Gabe Perez

Designer: Benjamin Woodlock

HBO’s Westworld

Produced by HBO Entertainment in association with Kilter Films, Bad Robot and Warner Bros. Television

Nominated twice before, Patrick Clair brought back his delicately crafted main titles for Westworld with some fresh notes and Easter eggs that fans spent time picking through to try to garner some clues ahead of season three.

RELATED: ‘Westworld’ Returns with Revamped Main Titles

Creative Director: Patrick Clair, Pinar Yanadarg Delul

Lead Animator and Compositor: Raoul Marks

Designer: Lance Slaton

Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music

Amazon Prime Video’s Carnival Row

Produced by Legendary Pictures TV and Amazon Studios

Theme Music by Nathan Barr

Apple TV+’s Defending Jacob

Produced by Anonymous Content / Paramount Television Studios

Theme Music by Ólafur Arnalds

RELATED: Nothing is as it Seems in Apple TV+’s ‘Defending Jacob’

Netflix’s Hollywood

Theme Music by Nathan Barr

Netflix’s Unorthodox

Produced by Studio Airlift and RealFilm

Theme Music by Antonio Gambale

Discovery’s Why We Hate

Produced by South Cove Productions

Theme Music by Laura Karpman

Hulu’s Wu-Tang: An American Saga

Produced by Imagine Television Studios

Theme Music by The Rza

Tags: elastic emmys 2020 main titles

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