The US television audience for the Academy Awards dropped to a record low of 9.85 million viewers on Walt Disney Co’s ABC, according to preliminary Nielsen data.

That represented a 58 per cent decline from last year’s final tally which showed 23.6 million people tuned in for the film industry’s highest honours.

The slide in viewership reflects a trend among live awards shows.

Hoping to draw viewers while adhering to pandemic safety measures, this year’s producers tried a few new things.

The awards were broadcast for the first time at a historical train station in downtown Los Angeles in a more intimate setting with only nominees and their guests.

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