daredevil prison fight

The cancellation of Daredevil was one of the biggest losses for Netflix this year, but at least it went out with a bang. A comic book series that had become synonymous with gripping, backbreaking fight sequences — and started the whole Netflix-Marvel hallway fight trend with its first Oldboy-inspired season 1 fight — Daredevil outdid itself in its third and final season with a rousing 11-minute fight sequence done entirely in one long take. But the reason that the Daredevil prison fight was so amazing may just be its downfall. According to showrunner Erik Oleson, that epic Daredevil prison fight won’t be eligible for a stunts Emmy because it’s just too damn long.

Long takes are astonishing technical feats even in a big-budget Hollywood movie, so pulling them off in the tight constrictions of television is even more impressive. Doubly impressive: filling that long take with relentlessly tough fight choreography and stunts, while the stakes and the number of injuries only rise. Daredevil has done that three times, and for its third, it delivered its magnum opus: an 11-minute, single-take prison right scene that had fans and critics buzzing for its technical prowess and Charlie Cox‘s incredible performance — with the help of an insanely talented stunt crew. But sadly, it looks like the team’s efforts won’t be rewarded by the prestigious Emmy Awards because it’s too long to be eligible for the Outstanding Stunt Coordination for a Drama Series, Limited Series or Movie award.

“The TV Academy would only allow a three minute clip, so, unfortunately, that epic oner was not eligible to be shown for stunts consideration,” showrunner Erik Oleson confirmed on Twitter.

According to TV Line, Emmy rules dictate that stunt coordinators can submit a reel no longer than 3 minutes in length, which immediately excludes the 11 minutes of the Daredevil prison fight scene. The rules are shown below:

Stunt Coordinators are required to submit a reel, not to exceed 3 minutes in length, which may combine the coordinator’s stunt sequences from the entire current eligibility year (June 1, 2018 – May 31, 2019) for the series. Stunt Coordinators must only pull clips from the series episodes that they solely coordinated and received Stunt Coordinator credit verifiable by the Producer and contracted as such. Please note: The content of the reel MUST NOT include the prelude to the program/episode (teaser).

This is honestly a huge shame, as the Daredevil fight sequence was an magnificent achievement not just for the show, but for television in general. Unlike the big 3-minute staircase fight, which wove several takes together via hidden cuts and CGI tricks, the season 3 prison riot fight was legitimately done in one long take, with stunt doubles and extras seamlessly weaving in and out of frame. Watch the first part of the fight scene (which is divided in three parts on YouTube because it is long), and mourn the injustice of this rule:

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