The 2021 Oscar Awards ceremony suffered a massive drop in viewership during the weekend, recording less than half of last year’s viewers. According to Nielsen rating numbers, an average of 9.85 million viewers watched the show Sunday evening, registering a dropoff of 58.3% viewers compared to last year.
This means that the show lost more viewers (13.75 million) than those who actually watched it (9.85 million). Consequently, the program earned a pitiful 1.9 rating among the key demographic of adults age 18-49.
Woke Oscar Awards Night
A major reason viewers got turned off were celebrities using the stage to comment on political issues. Many stars commented on Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin’s murder conviction and police brutality in general.
Last week, an Oscar Awards producer admitted to The New York Times that celebrities using the awards show to opine on politics and other controversial issues significantly affect viewership.
“Increasingly, the ceremonies are less about entertainment honors and more about progressive politics, which inevitably annoys those in the audience who disagree.
One recent producer of the Oscars, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss confidential metrics, said minute-by-minute post-show rating analysis indicated that ‘vast swaths’ of people turned off their televisions when celebrities started to opine on politics,” the Times reported.
Entertainment Industry In Denial Over Decline
Many in the entertainment industry believe that award shows are simply going through a temporary downturn due to the pandemic.
However, Nielsen ratings for the Oscars showed that awards nights like the Oscar are already losing viewership. Between 2014 until 2020, viewership already recorded a decline of 44%. In addition, the Oscars’ main rival, the Golden Globes, also recorded a steep dropoff in viewership.
The ongoing pandemic is another critical reason for declining viewership. Hollywood's most prestigious awards will now belong to films that barely played in cinemas. In fact, the largest box-office sales for the best picture nominee is “Promising Young Woman,” at $6.3 million.
Political Speeches Dominated the Oscar Awards
The 2021 Oscar Awards became one of the more political editions almost immediately from the onset. Actress Regina King said that if Chauvin received an ”Innocent” ’verdict, she would have worn marching boots instead of her heels.
“It has been quite a year. And we are smack dab in the middle of it. We are mourning the loss of so many, and I have to be honest: If things had gone differently this past week in Minneapolis, I may have traded in my heels for marching boots.
Now, I know that a lot of you people at home would reach for your remote when you feel like Hollywood is preaching to you, but as a mother of a black son, I know the fear that so many live with and no amount of fame and fortune changes that,” she said.
Appeal Not To Be Indifferent
Later, Travon Free, writer of the Oscar-Winning Best Live Action Short Film “Two Different Strangers,” also commented on the police situation.
“Today, the police will kill three people. And tomorrow the police will kill three people. And the day after that the police will kill three people because on average every day in America the police will kill three people, which amounts to about 1,000 people a year.
Those people happen to be disproportionately black people. And, y’know, James Baldwin once said, ‘The most despicable thing a person can be is indifferent to other people’s pain.’ And so I just ask that you please not be indifferent, please, don’t be indifferent to our pain,” Free said during his acceptance speech.
Watch news.com.au video reporting that this year's Oscars labeled the “worst ever” as ratings plummeted to an all-time historic low:
Did you watch the Oscars last Sunday? Did you find it entertaining? Or, did it bore you or turn you off?
Let us know what you think about the Oscar Awards lately. Share your comments in the comment section below.
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