Onstage Fireworks Couldn’t Salvage Oscar Ratings

Each yr, the proverbial bulletin board materials within the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences warfare room most likely stays the identical — make the Oscars memorable. In what turned out to be a monkey’s paw want, this yr’s ceremony was in contrast to the rest earlier than it, however not essentially in a great way, and positively not when it got here to rankings.

The 94th Academy Awards second-lowest rankings in its historical past, which was first televised for the event’s 25th iteration in 1953. This yr noticed a large bump from final yr’s stripped-down ceremonies, the lowest ever recorded, which needed to twist and switch and improvise within the run-up to the ceremony, in the end altering the venue to downtown’s Union Station because of COVID-19 dangers.

The evening noticed historical past made and controversy whipped up, courtesy of Will Smith’s slapping of Chris Rock onstage — should you’re seeking to relive the evening, you’ll want to take a look at LAist’s illustrated guide of the evening.

Tim Cogshell, one among our common FilmWeek critics, stated, plainly, that the ceremony was not good TV.

“Sometimes one of many three hosts would simply disappear for gigantic, lengthy stretches of the of the present,” stated Cogshell. “And I gotta let you know the writing, notably when two of these girls are precise skilled comedians — they might have written every kind of humorous issues for only for themselves. But as a substitute, we had these writers writing all of this materials. It was simply flat and never humorous and principally dangerous.”

The comedians he referenced — Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes — shared internet hosting duties with Regina Hall, the primary Oscars with devoted emcees since 2018. Despite slicing eight awards this yr, Cogshell, a critic for Alt-Film Guide and CineGods.com, stated the classes nonetheless managed to be onerous to comply with at occasions.

15.3 million viewers tuned in to the Oscars this yr, based on preliminary numbers.

For reference, the highest-rated occasion within the ceremony’s historical past was the 70th Academy Awards in 1998, when Titanic was king, Billy Crystal was slinging jokes, and 55.25 million viewers watched. And simply two years in the past, over 30 million folks watched the awards.

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