Last night’s (2/22) Academy Awards saw a 9 percent increase in ratings following an all-time low in 2008. An estimated 36.3 million people tuned in to see sleeper hit Slumdog Millionaire win eight statutes, including Best Picture. This is an increase of more than 4 million from last year, but still among the bottom three least-watched Oscars ever.
Zap2It.com reports the show on ABC won the night, averaging a 16.9 rating/26 share, dominating in every hour of primetime. Last year’s awards came in at 15.5/24. (The household rating considers all television sets in the US, while the share measures televisions sets that are turned on.) Also showing growth was viewership in the coveted adults 18-49 category, improved to last night to 9.5, from 8.4 in 2008.
By comparison, the recent Grammy Awards drew a 11.3 rating/18 share and about 20 million viewers. Last year’s season finale of American Idol was watched by an estimated 31.7 million viewers.