Slumdog Effect: Desi eyes pump up Oscar viewership | business | Hindustan Times
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Slumdog Effect: Desi eyes pump up Oscar viewership

The local angle can bring a global show home. Mumbai-centred Slumdog Millionaire helped the Oscar award ceremony live up television viewership expectations on Monday, with a record number of viewers watching the show broadcast from the Kodak Theatre, reports Anita Sharan.

business Updated: Feb 24, 2009 21:36 IST
Anita Sharan

The local angle can bring a global show home. Mumbai-centred Slumdog Millionaire helped the Oscar award ceremony live up television viewership expectations on Monday, with a record number of viewers watching the show broadcast from the Kodak Theatre.

But overall, Bollywood awards still do far better than Hollywood in Indian homes.

According to viewership data from aMap, the first telecast on Star Movies at 6.30 a.m. (IST) saw a huge viewership jump over the past two Academy Awards and was 128 per cent above the 2008 ceremony.

As India learnt about the accolades won by composer A.R. Rahman and others, the repeat at 8 p.m. by Star Movies saw nearly two million who watched, 59 per cent above the previous year.

Kevin Vaz, executive vice president, advertising sales, Star TV, said the live show that people woke up early to watch was certainly based on high expectations from Slumdog Millionaire winning a number of Oscars. The movie starring Anil Kapoor and Irfan Khan from Bollywood, and involving lyrics by Gulzar, grabbed eight Academy awards, also called the Oscars.

While the live telecast in the morning saw nearly 1.4 million viewers (cable & satellite homes, four-years-plus audience) exceeding last year’s prim-time (evening) telecast that garnered a 1.2 million viewership, the numbers of Indians watching the Oscars is nowhere near the kind of viewership numbers major domestic film awards are able to grab.

“Though the Oscars hold a charm of their own, they still do not match the pull of Bollywood, where similar awards would pull in 10 times more of audience,” said Joseph Eapen, director - research, Audience Measurement Analytics Ltd., which provides the aMap data.