April 26, 2021


VIEW WITH CAUTION: The 8-11PM ABC numbers below contain viewing of THE OSCARS in the Eastern and Central time zones and mostly local or post-Oscars coverage in the Pacific Time Zone. More accurate program ratings for The Oscars will be available Tuesday morning in the official nationals for Sunday, when live viewing in the Pacific Time Zone from 5-8PM PT is added to the rating. The actual Oscars rating will go up by +20% or more from the numbers below.

Press reports indicate the official nationals for the 2021 Oscars (9.85 million P2+ L+SD and  a 1.9 adult 18-49 L+SD rating) will look very much like the 8-9PM fast affiliate numbers below. 

DEMOGRAPHIC DETAIL: For each broadcast program (or hour segment), the chart below displays preliminary live+same day key advertiser demographics (adult 18-34, 18-49 and 25-54 ratings), audience skews (women 18-49, men 18-49 and adults 50+ shares) and total viewership (thousands of people over the age of 2).

Additional ratings analysis and comparisons follow the chart.

ABC:  As noted above, the current 1.7 for THE OSCARS will be updated tomorrow, and other reports are using ABC’s estimate of a 1.9 final as their basis for comparison.  Strictly preliminary-to-preliminary, the 1.7 is down 63% from last year’s early 4.6, and if the final rating indeed adjusts to 1.9, that will be down 64% from last year’s final 5.33.  While this is terrible, it’s in keeping with the ratings of other recent pandemic awards shows like the Golden Globes (down 67% in finals) and the Grammys (down 57%).  All of these shows will hope for a rebound next year.  The current 0.9 for the OSCARS: INTO THE SPOTLIGHT pre-show will also adjust in finals.

CBS:  After an Oscars-dinged 0.4 for 60 MINUTES (down 0.2 from last week), reruns at 0.3/0.3/0.2.

NBC:  Following a rerun of ELLEN’S GAME OF GAMES at 0.2, a run of FATE OF THE FURIOUS at 0.3.

FOX:  Reruns at 0.2/0.2/0.3/0.3/0.3/0.3.

CW:  Reruns at 0.1/0.1.

Tonight, ABC airs the special SESAME STREET:  50 YEARS OF SUNNY DAYS.


COMPARISONS TO SIMILAR NIGHTS: Preliminary adult 18-49 live+same day ratings versus the same night last year and same night last week.

Note: The fast affiliate-based ratings below measure what aired on network affiliates in 210 U.S. markets from 8-11 pm Eastern & Pacific or 7-10 pm Central & Mountain. The numbers are some combination of the network schedule and any pre-emptions (such as local news or weather coverage). Also live events such as sporting events and major specials are usually undercounted because the fast nationals measure what was on in primetime in the Pacific Time Zone (mostly what aired after the live event ended on the West Coast). Accurate program ratings will be available with the broadcast finals.

CABLE RATINGS: Come back this afternoon for detailed demographic ratings for top Friday cable programs. Saturday & Sunday cable ratings and broadcast finals will be posted Tuesday morning.






About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."