Despite an emphasis on old-fashioned Hollywood glamour, Monday night's Oscar telecast on ABC-TV failed to stem a two-year decline in ratings. Even though it won its time period, the Oscar show scored slightly below last year's ratings figures, according to research estimates by ABC on Tuesday.
A.C. Nielsen Co. figures provided to the network showed that Monday's Oscar show got a 27.3 rating, which works out to about 23.4 million homes, and was watched by an estimated 43% share of the national audience. A ratings point this season is equal to 850,900 homes.
The 1985 Oscar telecast, also aired by ABC, got a 27.7 rating and a 45% share of the audience. The previous year's Oscar program garnered a 30.3 rating and a 50% share of the audience.
Monday's Academy Awards show fared better in the Nielsen overnight ratings for 12 major cities than in the rest of the country. It averaged a 35.3 rating, or about 29 million homes, and a 53% share of the audience in those cities, which include New York and Los Angeles.
In Los Angeles, the three-hour, 11-minute Oscar telecast, which ended in the middle of prime evening time on the West Coast, drew a 53% share of the audience and a 38.4 rating, meaning it was seen in nearly 1.7 million homes.