Millions of Americans who have grown tired of left-wing celebrity lectures decided not to watch this year’s Academy Awards, sending ratings for the ABC telecast to their lowest point in modern history. The Walt Disney Company, which owns ABC, is now admitting that the disastrous broadcast had a “hard impact” on the company.
Disney made its first public comments about the ratings fiasco during a press conference ahead of its “upfront” presentation to advertisers.
“We were seeing a hard impact on the performance this year of the Oscars, given the reality of movies in theaters and the moviegoing audience being able to actually see all those movies,” said Disney’s head of advertising sales and partnership, Rita Ferro as reported by Deadline.
The 93rd Academy Awards telecast on ABC drew only 10.4 million viewers, a drop of more than 50% from the previous year’s low. Since 2014, when it drew 43.7 million viewers, the annual broadcast’s viewership has steadily declined. The drop in ratings may jeopardize Disney’s ability to command top dollar from advertisers on Hollywood’s biggest night.
According to Deadline, ABC is asking advertisers to pay $2 million or more for 30-second commercials during Oscar night. And according to reports, Disney has suggested that all corporate “sponsorships” be reviewed.
“There’s no question that we will look at all of the sponsorships across all of our business going forward and make sure that they reflect the potential and the audience and the impact that they drive,” Rita Ferro continued. “but live continues to be an important strategy for us.”
The last few days have been tumultuous for Disney. The company reported disappointing quarterly results last week, with subscriptions to its Disney+ streaming service falling short of Wall Street expectations. Disney’s stock dropped 4% as a result of the news.
The company is still dealing with the fallout from the revelation that it promoted critical race theory to its employees, encouraging them to strive for “equity,” or “equality of outcome,” and to consider America’s “racist infrastructure.”