LOS ANGELES (CBSLA/AP) — The 2018 Academy Awards are officially the least-watched Oscars telecast in history.

Preliminary ratings figures saw the telecast drop to an all-time low of 26.5 million viewers, roughly 19 percent down from its 2017 numbers.

It’s  the first time on record the Oscars reached fewer than 30 million people and marks the lowest number of viewers since 2008, when nearly 32 million people tuned in.

With a running time of nearly four hours, the Oscars also clocked in as the longest telecast in over a decade, despite only topping the 2017 show by one minute.

Television viewership in general is declining, but Oscar ratings are often tied to the popularity of the movies that are celebrating, and this doesn’t say much for “The Shape of Water,” which won best picture on Sunday night.

The previous low-water mark for the Oscars came in 2008, when “No Country For Old Men” won best picture. Last year’s show, also hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, reached 33 million viewers.

Official Nielsen figures for the telecast won’t be available until Tuesday.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (2)
  1. The “livestreaming for free” ads were misleading. I had to go in to my office, and planned to watch there while I did paperwork. It turns out you had to have a paid subscription except to see the AT&T “not the Oscars.”

  2. Kenny StJohn says:

    I stopped watching the moment the first political jab was made. I did try to watch. However, I am not sure why Hollywood does not understand they have lost whatever moral platform they thought they had. Racial inequality, sexual harassment, and the double standard of lifestyle have made all of their comments/commentary meaningless. Most of us go to the movies for escape. However, if Hollywood continues to not get it, people will stop going to the movies all together. High ticket prices, loud movie goers, sky high food prices, and the never ending political lecturing is just making most of us want to stay home and do Hulu, Amazon, and Netflix.

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