ABC’s broadcast of the 85th annual Academy Awards ceremony on Sunday, Feb. 24, 2013, saw a surge in viewers, especially in the key demographic of adults 18-49, based on Nielsen overnights.
The Hollywood Reporter’s Live Feed reports that the telecast, hosted by Seth MacFarlane, delivered a 26.6 household reting and 41, share, up 4% from the 25.5/38 for the 2012 ceremony.
Nielsen’s Fast Nationals showed a more significant increase in the 18-49 demo, with the ceremony pulling a 12.1 average rating, up 19% from last year’s 10.2.
“The 2012 Oscars, hosted by show veteran Billy Crystal, were largely steady from the previous year. The 39.3 million haul marked a 4 percent jump from 2011 and the final 11.7 adults rating was off by only a tenth of a point,” THR reports. “Despite the relatively even ratings of late, the show has fluctuated quite a bit in the last 10 years — with the highest returns in 2004 (43.6 million, a 10 million jump from the previous year) and the lowest in 2008 with 31.8 million.”
ABC’s red carpet coverage before the ceremony also saw an increase. “Oscar arrivals pulled a 5.0 adults rating at 7 p.m., a 6.7 adults rating at 7:30 p.m. and a 9.2 adults rating at 8 p.m.,” THR reports. “The margin of improvement over the previous year’s fast returns rose from 4 percent to 14 percent from the first to final half-hour.”
The piece notes that Fox’s Sunday animation lineup — much of which was created by Oscars host MacFarlane — came in second in the ratings, with Fox averaging a 1.3 in viewers 18-49 and 2.9 million viewers.
“Only CBS put up an original against ABC’s big show,” the report notes. “A new episode of ‘The Amazing Race,’ book-ended by repeats, dropped 28 percent to a series low 1.8 adults rating. The network averaged a 1.1 adults rating and 5.7 million viewers. NBC repeats followed with a 0.8 adults rating and 2.8 million viewers.”
Unvision averaged a 0.8 in the 18-49 demo for the night, with 2.3 million viewers.