Oscar Ratings Down from Last Year - Billboard says

The 83rd annual Academy Awards were watched by 37.6 million viewers, down 9% compared to last year's Oscar-cast.

The show, widely panned by critics for its plodding pacing and uninspired numbers, was once again the most-watched awards show since last year's Oscars, which averaged 41.3 million viewers.

Hosted by Anne Hathaway and James Franco, who were chosen in part to inject some youth into the proceedings, the Oscars was flat year-to-year in the 18-49 demographic with an 11.7 rating. And the telecast managed to hang on to 95% of last year's rating in the 18-34 demographic with a 10.6 rating.

The show awarded "The King's Speech" top honors. Trent Reznor and co-composer Atticus Ross won the Best Original Score Oscar for "The Social Network," while Randy Newman won Best Original Song for "We Belong Together," from "Toy Story 3." Last year's telecast featured a match-up between James Cameron's "Avatar," the top-grossing movie of all time, and ex-wife Kathryn Bigelow's "The Hurt Locker."

The telecast was down 7% in households, posting a 24.5 household rating from 8:30-11:30 p.m. compared to last year's 26.5.

ABC was of course first for the night, more than doubling the other broadcast networks' combined total.

The red carpet special from 7-8:30 p.m. averaged a 13.2 household rating.

The top five household metered markets were New York (33.9 rating), San Francisco (33.6 rating), Chicago (33.0 rating), Kansas City (32.7 rating) and Boston (32.0 rating). 


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