Oscar 2014: Early TV ratings show best telecast numbers since 2005


Was it the selfies by Ellen DeGeneres that did it?

Sunday’s Oscar telecast on ABC was on track to be the highest-rated since 2005, according to early numbers from Nielsen.

A telecast marked by nods to technology -- DeGeneres, hosting for the first time in seven years, took a smartphone picture of herself watching the audience and later snapped one with big stars -- scored a 27.9 household rating/41 share in the largest TV markets, up 7% compared with last year.

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The 86th Academy Awards, telecast live from the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, ran from 5:30 to 8:41 p.m. PST. The historical epic “12 Years a Slave” won best picture.

But not all the critics were charmed by the broadcast. The Hollywood Reporter was scathing, calling the ceremony boring and self-involved and sharply criticizing DeGeneres’ work.

Complete numbers, including total-viewer figures, will not be available until later Monday.

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