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One year after its lowest-rated telecast ever, the Academy is looking for ways to bring viewers back — and entice younger audiences to watch. A THR/Morning Consult poll of adults 18-34 is shedding light on what that age group really wants.
The Academy’s choice to pretape eight categories sparked controversy but may prove popular among younger viewers, with 66 percent reporting that the top awards — best actor, actress, director and picture — are a major reason to tune in. Watching an artist they like perform was another major reason for 46 percent, while 39 percent listed red carpet fashion as a major reason. There’s also support for debuting movie trailers during the telecast, with 57 percent strongly or somewhat supporting the idea.
This year’s broadcast will recognize a film voted on by fans on Twitter, but just 13 percent of those polled are very excited about this prospect, while 31 percent were not excited at all. But an Oscar for popular film — a 2018 addition for which the Academy faced derision, then reversed its decision — found more enthusiasm, with 56 percent strongly or somewhat supporting.
The bad news is, few in this demo are regular Oscar viewers, with only 6 percent saying they always watch and just 11 percent reporting they will tune in to this year’s telecast, hosted by Regina Hall, Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes. Hosts, in general, are cited by 30 percent of respondents for being a strong reason to watch.
This story first appeared in the March 23 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.
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