The ratings for Sunday night’s telecast of the 90th annual Academy Awards collapsed by a whopping 16 percent, which would mean an all-time low, according to early estimates.
The 90th Academy Awards, which (correctly) crowned The Shape of Water as Best Picture, is eyeing it lowest rating all-time. Last night’s ceremony drew a 18.9 Live+Same Day rating in the metered-market households. That was off 16% from last year’s 22.4 rating, which was a nine-year low. The 18.9 appears to be an all-time low for the Oscars, below the previous low ratings point, logged with the 2008 telecast (21.9), hosted by Jon Stewart, when No Country For Old Men won Best Picture.
Variety reports that the “8 p.m.-11 p.m. portion of ABC’s telecast averaged an 18.9 household rating and 32 share in Nielsen’s metered-market overnight ratings … That’s down about 16% from the 22.5/37 rating generated by the 2017 Oscars.”
The ratings will be updated once all the numbers are in,But if past is prologue, those numbers will not change much either way.
The writing was on the wall for this ratings catastrophe all year. Almost every other award show suffered massive audience erosion and there was no movie nominated for Best Picture for anyone to root for. Seven of the nine nominees averaged just $47 million at the box office, which means only about 5 million people saw them.
Bringing Jimmy Kimmel back for another round as host was also a big mistake. Kimmel is one of the most divisive and polarizing figures in the country, a Trump-hating Democrat who regularly lectures the rest of us about embracing socialized medicine and giving up our guns.
With Kimmel as host, the Academy basically told 50 percent of the country to go watch something else.
The Oscars’ television audience also has been dropping in recent years as voting members of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences have tended to celebrate smaller movies. The 2018 winner for best picture, “The Shape of Water,” has earned $57.4 million at the box office in the U.S. and Canada, making it the highest-grossing honoree in the category since “Argo” in 2013.
Viewers may have also become weary of this year’s awards-show speechifying about the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements exposing and combating sexual harassment in the entertainment industry. In a particularly insider-y moment, lead actress winner Frances McDormand finished an otherwise emotional tribute to the other female nominees with the term “inclusion rider,” referring to a contractual clause that requires a specific level of diversity in the cast and crew of a project.
On top of insulting Trump voters, this Oscar telecast also promised to be a lecture in favor of gun control (by elitists protected by hundreds of armed guards) and against sexual harassment (by elitists who are either harassers or enablers). As the early ratings show, even Democrats were not interested in watching that kind of self-serving hypocrisy.
If Sunday night’s telecast signaled anything, though, it is that Hollywood is going the same way as the mainstream media. With their ratings and credibility gone, and knowing they have lose Middle America forever, both institutions are blatantly and belligerently moving to the far left in the hopes of at least holding on to that base of support.
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