Business Standard

Oscar ratings improve for first time in 5 years with 29.6 million viewers


Press Trust of India Los Angeles
The Oscars have improved their ratings with a surge of 3.1 million or 13 per cent in viewership, courtesy a razor-tight runtime, performances from members of Queen and Lady Gaga and presence of films like "Black Panther" and "Bohemian Rhapsody" in Best Picture category.
The ABC Network said the 91st Academy Awards attracted 29.6 million viewers and clocked a rating of 7.7 in adult 18-49 demography.
In a statement, the network also said the Oscars, touted US TV's biggest awards show, stood well above other key award shows this year -- the Grammys and the Golden Globes.
The Grammys, held earlier this month, were viewed by 19.9 million viewers and had a rating of 5.6, while the Golden Globes clocked 18.6 million viewers with a 5.2 rating.
The 2019 edition is therefore US TV's most watched entertainment telecast in two years, and the first rise in viewership since Ellen DeGeneres hosted the awards in 2014.
The 2018 ceremony had marked the lowest point for the Oscars in its history with only 26.5 million viewers and a rating of 6.8 rating.
The increase in the viewership figures was on the agenda of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) ever since the 2018 awards.
As one of the measures, the academy had proposed a new category -- Best Popular Film -- to boost its rating but it was scrapped due to a negative feedback.
In another step, the academy had announced that it will be presenting four categories -- cinematography, film editing, live action shorts and makeup and hairstyling -- during commercial breaks in order to keep the live telecast under three hours. It had said the winners' speeches would air later in the broadcast.
However, this decision was ultimately reversed after it was criticised by many in Hollywood, including the likes of Alfonso Cuaron, Guillermo del Toro, Brad Pitt and Denis Villeneuve.
The ceremony also went host-less, a first since its 1989 edition, after Kevin Hart stepped aside due to a controversy over his old homophobic tweets.

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First Published: Feb 26 2019 | 5:05 PM IST

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