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TV viewing trends for award shows in Canada

Jo Loup Mar 13, 2024 9:30:00 AM
red carpet

For decades, award shows have been a popular form of entertainment for viewers, offering a glimpse into the glamorous world of celebrity. From the Oscars to the Golden Globes to the Grammys, they have become a cultural phenomenon, drawing in millions of viewers each year.

In recent years, there has been a noticeable decrease in the viewership of these prestigious award shows. The ongoing debate regarding the lack of diversity among nominees and winners, and the changes enforced due to the pandemic, such as remote and pre-recorded shows, had a significant impact on their popularity. 

Yet, there was a promising increase in viewership of the main shows last year, and we are seeing a similar trend in 2024. Fueled by the Barbenheimer phenomenon there has been plenty of buzz going into this year’s awards season which kicked off in January with the Golden Globes. Despite harsh reviews of both the host and the telecast itself, average viewing was up 50% compared to last year.  It remains significantly less than 4 years ago when Ricky Gervais gave his last hosting performance. 

In February the Grammys, hosted by Trevor Noah for the fourth year in a row, was the most-watched Grammys performance since 2020 both in Canada and the US. The show was widely praised for its memorable moments, including Tracey Chapman making her first public appearance in years, Taylor Swift's announcement of her upcoming album, and Joni Mitchell's debut performance at the Grammys. 

In March it was the turn of the Academy Awards. The buzzworthy moments included Canada’s own Ryan Gosling’s’ rendition of ‘I’m Just Ken’, Kate McKinnon’s and John Mulaney’s hilarious presentations, John Cena showing up nude not to mention Jimmy Kimmel’s response to a particular criticism he received via social media to name a few. Overall, it was an enjoyable production that the Academy will be proud of. That being said, did it deliver the huge audiences the producers were hoping for?  

Viewing highlights for Award shows in 2024

  • The Academy Awards is still the most viewed of the three shows with over 7.7m Canadians aged 2+ watching at least a minute this year (however this preliminary reach figure is down 13% compared to final figures from last year). 

  • The average minute audience for the Academy Awards is higher than previous years for the younger demos (AMA 000s is up 7% for A25-54 and 19% for the A18-34 age group when compared to last year) 

  • The Academy Awards show is most popular in the Toronto market where 29% of Ind2+ watched at least a minute compared to just 12% in Edmonton. 

  • The average minute audience for both the Grammys and the Golden Globes also increased; up 28% and 50% respectively for Ind2+ in Total Canada. 

  • The audiences to all three shows skew female but the Golden Globes has the heaviest skew with over 60% of the audience in Canada being female 

Produced using our API Conex, the full report is available to our TV PPM subscribers on the Lens platform.


Related blog: TV viewing trends in Canada