Inception (movie)

Oscars telecast may get lower ratings

Oscars telecast may get lower ratings

The Academy Awards will shine the spotlight on a crop of best picture nominees that isn't short on smaller movies with offbeat, personal stories.

From a film about a fading movie star struggling to gain artistic credibility ("Birdman") to a picture about a young drummer waging psychological warfare with a sadistic music teacher ("Whiplash") and another centered on a kid growing up in an average American family ("Boyhood") — this year's nominees included several anti-blockbusters that left critics buzzing.

But those pictures largely failed to attract moviegoers in a year that, overall, produced among the lowest box-office tallies in recent...