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Oscar ratings up from last year's record low

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Household ratings for the 81st Annual Academy Awards were up 6 percent compared to last year, according to overnight Nielsen data. Sunday night’s ABC telecast averaged a 23.3 household rating/35 share in the 56 metered U.S. markets. (We’ll find out how that translates into total viewers when Nielsen releases that number later this afternoon.) The Top 5 highest-rated markets were: New York (34.1/49), Chicago (31.2/46), Los Angeles (28.1/44), Boston (27.4/42) and Kansas City (27.1/41).

More Oscars coverage:
Oscars ’09 Readers Poll: What did you think?
Dave Karger’s OscarWatch: The morning after
Missy Schwartz’s picks the night’s 13 best/worst moments
Meeta Agrawal picks the best and worst on the red carpet
EW reports from the Kodak Theatre, parties… and bathrooms!
Ken Tucker’s take on the telecast
Adam B. Vary’s report from backstage
Whitney Pastorek on the scene at Prince’s Oscar night house party
Complete list of winners
EW live blogs the Oscars telecast
EW live blogs the red carpet shows
EW’s Oscars Central (Dave Karger’s video interviews, photo galleries, and more)