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Oscars Producers Craig Zadan, Neil Meron Hint at Not Returning

The duo oversaw last three Academy Awards, including this year’s telecast which drew fewest viewers in six years

Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, the producing team behind the last three Academy Awards shows, apparently will not be returning.

There was no announcement from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, but on Saturday night Zadan tweeted what certainly sounds like a farewell:

“Hoping that whoever produces the #Oscars next year will retain our innovations: #TeamOscar program & reading all 24 nom on Oscar nom morning”

ABC’s telecast of last month’s Academy Awards, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, had the lowest total viewers in six years. The show averaged 36.6 million viewers and a 10.8 rating in adults 18-49 — declines of 16 percent and 18 percent respectively from last year.

In fairness, the list of nominated films was light on mainstream hits, with “American Sniper” the only one of the eight Best Picture nominees to generate more than $100 million at the domestic box office.

Zadan and Meron are the first producers to do three consecutive shows since Gil Cates did six between 1990 and 1995.

A call to the AMPAS publicity office was not immediately returned Sunday.

Zadan and Meron also produced the movie musicals “Chicago” and “Hairspray” and the live TV musicals “The Sound of Music” and “Peter Pan.”