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With Box Office Hits Like ‘Barbie’ and ‘Oppenheimer,’ Will Oscar Ratings Get a Boost?

Some of the year’s top Oscar contenders like 'Barbie' and 'Oppenheimer' were box office blockbusters —will it make viewers want to tune in?

The goal, then-Academy president Sidney Ganis said, was to bring recognition to “fantastic movies that often show up in the other Oscar categories but have been squeezed out of the race for the top prize.” As a result, commercial offerings have been more regularly recognized alongside art-house fare. While the Daniels’ zany comedy “Everything Everywhere All at Once” became the first indie since the pandemic to clear $100 million globally, recent winners like Siân Heder’s dramedy “CODA,” Chloé Zhao’s sweeping Western “Nomadland” and Barry Jenkins’ searing coming-of-age story “Moonlight” had a smaller pop-cultural footprint. Though historically, some of the more watched ceremonies have featured blockbuster winners like “Titanic,” with an estimated 87.5 million viewers, box office dollars don’t necessarily correlate with Academy Awards or telecast ratings.

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