WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump tweeted about the dismal Oscar ratings, attributing it to the lack of star power before joking that he was the exception.
“Lowest rated Oscars in HISTORY. Problem is, we don’t have Stars anymore – except your President (just kidding, of course)!” he wrote.
Lowest rated Oscars in HISTORY. Problem is, we don’t have Stars anymore – except your President (just kidding, of course)!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 6, 2018
According to Nielsen, viewership fell to 26.5 million viewers, a drop of 19% from the previous year. The audiences for all award shows have been down, but there also has been concern that the lack of box office blockbusters among the best picture nominees has diminished interest.
The Republican National Committee and other conservative groups have said that the drop in viewership is connected to winners and presenters using the Oscar stage to make political statements, a tradition that actually extends back to the 1970s.
“Fox & Friends,” a Trump favorite, highlighted the low ratings on Tuesday, while Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson featured segments on the dismal numbers and connected it to the liberal nature of Hollywood and what was said during the telecast.
Host Jimmy Kimmel and other presenters made reference to the president four times during the telecast, as well as a joke about Vice President Mike Pence.
When it came to political speeches, the greater focus of attention was on issues like the #MeToo movement, diversity, the Parkland shootings and Dreamers.
Last year, Trump did not tweet about the Oscars but he did tell Breitbart News that the most infamous moment, in which the wrong best picture winner was read, was due to the partisanship.
“I think they were focused so hard on politics that they didn’t get the act together at the end. It was a little sad. It took away from the glamour of the Oscars,” Trump said.
Update: Kimmel responded on Tuesday.
“Thanks, lowest rated President in HISTORY,” he wrote on Twitter.
Thanks, lowest rated President in HISTORY. https://t.co/E01UgDaZ3T
— Jimmy Kimmel (@jimmykimmel) March 6, 2018