18.7 million people watched the Oscars in the United States on Sunday. This is reported by US media with reference to preliminary data from the market research company Nielsen. Final numbers are pending. Not outstanding, but definitely strong numbers - also in view of the competition. At the same time, the finale of the acclaimed series "The Last of Us" was broadcast on the pay channel HBO.
Compared to the previous year, the ratings have increased by twelve percent. In 2022, only 16.62 million viewers tuned in to the US broadcaster ABC. The 2021 gala has had the worst ratings so far. The show, reduced due to corona restrictions, only wanted to see 10.4 million before that.
The 2023 Oscars are the gala with the highest ratings in three years, i.e. since the beginning of the corona pandemic. But the numbers are deceptive. The 18.7 million are still the third-worst odds in Oscar history. The 2020 ceremony held the negative record before the pandemic, which was still seen by 23 million people at the time.
Interest in the Oscars has been plummeting for years. At its peak, 40 million people watched the film award. Those responsible can only speculate about the reasons. Is it because of the increased competition from streaming services? Are too few popular films nominated?
The makers have been trying to prevent the latter for years by expanding the top category "Best Film" to up to 10 nominations. So more blockbusters slip in, at least that's the hope. That calculation worked out this year. With "Top Gun: Maverick" and "Avatar: The Way of Water" there were two box office hits in the running. Also the big winner "Everything Everwhere All at Once" was a hit and instant cult film.
The increased interest in this year's Oscars could also be related to Will Smith (54), as evil tongues claim. His freak out in front of the cameras last year showed how unpredictable and spectacular live broadcasts can be.