Oscars: What Movie Won Best Picture at the Most and Least-Watched Academy Awards?

And who hosted each show?

Last Updated: March 1, 2018 @ 12:49 PM

It’s Oscars time again, and if returning host Jimmy Kimmel wants to avoid being the least-watched host in Academy Awards history, he’d better haul in 32,019,000 million total viewers or more. That allows for some wiggle room from his first turn.

Last year, 32.937 million overall audience members tuned in on-average to watch “Moonlight” (eventually) win Best Picture. While it was a little too close for comfort, the Nielsen return topped the all-time low of 32.018 million total viewers set back in 2008.

A decade-ago, the 80th Academy Awards were emceed by Jon Stewart and the final trophy of the (relatively) poorly rated evening ended up in the hands of the Coen Brothers for “No Country for Old Men.” That masterpiece topped “Atonement,” “Juno,” “Michael Clayton” and “There Will Be Blood.”

So 2008 was the low point — but what was the high? Interestingly enough, exactly 10 years before that one, the 70th Oscars drew a whopping 55.249 million total viewers. The peak was hosted by Billy Crystal, and it saw “Titanic” claim Best Picture over “As Good as It Gets,” “The Full Monty,” “Good Will Hunting” and “L.A. Confidential.”

Everything’s bigger in Jim Cameron’s world.

Though Sunday marks 90 years of Oscars, Nielsen’s electronic database only dates back to September 1991. Any awards show before then has been lost to history, much like “La La Land’s” Best Picture trophy.