Update: The overnight ratings were not misleading.
Sunday’s Academy Awards ceremony indeed suffered a year-over-year from last week’s show, which was itself a poor performer by Oscars standards.
According to live+same-day data posted by Showbuzz, Sunday’s 90th Oscars broadcast averaged a 6.8 adults 18-49 rating and 26.54 million overall viewers.
The numbers markedly trail the 9.1 rating and 32.94 million viewer mark drawn by last year’s show, which at the time ranked as the least-watched Oscars in nine years.
This year’s show was the least-watched on record.
The 2017 edition of the Academy Awards posted a nine-year viewership low.
Based on preliminary data, this year’s edition likely drew an even smaller audience.
According to metered market data posted by Deadline, Sunday’s Oscars ceremony drew an 18.9 overnight household rating.
While the figure obviously dominated that posted by any other Sunday program, it represents a non-trivial drop from the 22.4 rating garnered by last year’s show.
The number may, in fact, signal an all-time low for the ceremony. Adults 18-49 and total viewership data will be available Monday afternoon.
This year’s ceremony represented the 90th edition of the Oscars.
The decline is, of course, not unexpected. Ratings for television programs (and particularly awards shows) continue to trend downward. This year’s show, moreover, broad-skewing films in the Best Picture category. It also featured a shortage of “hot” names in the key acting races (the fact that none of the four acting races was viewed as competitive did not help matters).
Some analysts will also point to fear of a politically driven show as a ratings deterrent.