Press Releases

Statement From Rev. Al Sharpton On The Decline In Oscar Ratings

Feb 29, 2016

For Immediate Release
February 29, 2016
Contact: Rachel Noerdlinger/Jonathan Weinstein
Phone: 212-681-1380 



(NEW YORK, NY) ― “The early reports of a decline in the Oscar viewership is heartening to those of us that campaigned around asking citizens to tune out. This is a significant decline and should send a message to the Academy and to movie studio heads. Though clearly we don’t take full credit for the decline, certainly one would have to assume we were effective and part of the decline. And to those that mocked the idea of a tune out, it seems the joke was on them.

This is not about actors and actresses getting awards, this is about inclusion and the respect of ticket buyers and viewers who are ordinary struggling American citizens who have been marginalized. For those that live and work in Los Angeles in the movie industry and can’t get jobs because people from their community can’t get deals because there is no one there to greenlight their films and work, this ought to send a message to Hollywood that it is time for a change.”


Oscar Ratings: Return Of Chris Rock Sees Show Hit 8-Year Low

by Dominic Patten

February 29, 2016

Chris Rock came out swinging in one of the most anticipated opening monologues in years and took on the diversity controversy from the get-go at the 88th Academy Awards. Last night also saw Brie Larson win Best ActressLeonardo DiCaprio snag Best Actor in his fifth nomination, Alejandro G. Iñárritu was named Best Director and Spotlight won Best Picture. With all that, the Oscars themselves did not have a great night ratings-wise with a 23.1/37 in metered market results.

Declining to an 8-year low, that’s down 6% from the 24.6/39 that the ceremony got last year in early results from the 56 markets across the country. That 2015 Neil Patrick Harris-hosted Oscars were matched with the 2011 Oscars for the third worst the Academy Awards has done in MM ratings since the last time Rock fronted the gig in 2005 – only 2009’s Hugh Jackman-hosted 23.3 and 2008’s Jon Stewart-hosted 21.9 were lower. Obviously, in the early results, last night’s show dipped below 2009 and close to 2008 numbers.

The 2005 Oscars were the best the show has done in the past decade with a 30.1/43 MM rating. That high has also remained true in later numbers for the show. WithMillion Dollar Baby winning Best Picture, the 2005 Oscars ended up with a massive 42.14 million viewers and 19.6 million among adults 18-49. In both categories, that was a dip from 2004’s results. Compared to the last time Rock hosted 11-years ago, last night’s 8:30 – midnight show was down 23% in metered market results – much more than a dip.

Last night’s Rock-hosted show averaged a 13.5/7 among adults 18-49 according to Nielsen. That’s a 3% slip from the LPM markets for the 2015 Oscars.

Last year’s Oscars ended up with 37.3 million total viewers and an 11.0/26 rating in the key demo. That was the lowest performance among adults 18-49 since 2008 and the lowest viewership since 2009. We will update with more numbers from last night’s Oscars as they come in to see where the 2016 Oscars ultimately ends up.

UPDATE 8:50 AM: The Oscars continued to trend lower in the second set of early ratings. In the non-time zone-adjusted fast nationals, the telecast logged a 9.7 adults 18-49 rating from 8:30 PM – 11 PM and 31.76 million total viewers. That was down -6% in the demo and -8% in viewers from the primetime portion of the 2015 ceremony hosted by Harris. The Oscars were the only broadcast TV game in town, with NBC’s Dateline (1.0 in 18-49) faring the best of the rest. Cable challenge was far stronger, led by AMC’s juggernaut The Walking Dead whose ratings won’t be released until Tuesday.