With the Super Bowl and Grammys in our rear view mirror it’s time for Hollywood to honor its BEST with the (87th Annual Academy Awards.)  This yrs Oscars will have a strong act to follow given last yr’s Ellen DeGeneres performance.  With her popularity, the pizza delivery AND the Samsung “selfie” stunts, the show was seen by a domestic audience of 43.7 M. It was the biggest audience since 2000 when American Beauty won b-4 46.3 M. Last yr’s audience #s surely wasn’t hurt by Leonardo DiCaprio & Matthew McConaughey being nominated for Best Actor.  This yr Actor & Comedian Neil Patrick Harris will be hosting. He isn’t new to the award hosting gig as he has also hosted the Primetime Emmys & Tony Awards in the past.  A good host can go a long just ask Seth McFarlane who hosted in 2012 with a domestic audience that barely pushed over 40M.  This yr’s show isn’t short on star power such as Steve Carell, Bradley Cooper & Michael Keaton are Best Actor. Juilanne Moore & Reese Witherspoon are Best Actress nominees. With all these big names and the controversy & box office around American Sniper the Oscars will count 40-43 M.

Table 1: Best Picture Nominees
Nominated Movie Date Mins Prd
$ M
Dom Box    $ M For
$ M
% Frgn Box RTTN TOMT USA 2DAY Noms Odds
American Sniper(R) 12/25 132 $58.8 306.5 $86.6 22% 73 *** 6 12/1
Imitation Game(PG13) 11/28 114 $14.0 80.3 $76.9 49% 89 *** 8 28/1
Grnd Budapest Htl(R) 3/7 100 $26.1 59.1 $115.5 66% 92 ***½ 9 33/1
Selma(PG13) 12/25 127 $20.0 48.5 N/A N/A 98 ***½ 2 28/1
Birdman(R) 10/17 119 $18.0 36.6 $35.6 49% 92 ***½ 9 2/3
Theory of Evrythg(PG13) 11/7 123 $15.0 33.3 $65.1 66% 79 *** 5 50/1
Boyhood(R) 7/11 164 $4.0 25.2 $19.1 43% 98 **** 6 6/5
Whiplash(R) 10/10 104 $3.3 10.5 $0.9 8% 95 **** 5 50/1
*Grand Budapest Hotel Budget was $23 M Euros converted to US $  = $26.1M

In T-1 we see all of this yr’s BEST PICTURE nominees. When it comes to box office $$ & ¢¢ American Sniper is a runaway with more than $300M at the Dom Box.  The 2 heavy favorites for Best Picture are Birdman & BoyhoodBoyhood won Best Pic at this yrs Golden Globes which historically hasn’t meant much at the Oscars, but during the last 3 yrs the GG winner won Oscar Gold & Best PicBirdman & The Grand Budapest Hotel led the way for total Oscar noms this yr. The Grand Budapest Hotel also led the way in total For Box by a big margin bringing in over $115 M almost double its Dom Box total ($59 M).  The old saying goes “you have to spend money to make money” well that may be the case in BIZ but NOT when it comes to Oscar Gold. Only American Sniper spent more than $50 M to make, the rest spent significantly less $50 M.  The last film to win Best Pic with a Prod Bdgt of more that $50 M was The Departed ($90 M) in 2006. The Oscars lesson is that you don’t need to spend gold to get GOLD!

About bernacmd

For over 24 years, University of Detroit Mercy Marketing Professor Michael Bernacchi, Ph.D., J.D, has produced "uNDER tHE mIKE-rOSCOPE", a newsletter discussing current "marketing and advertising¹s bends, trends & ends." A well-know fixture in Detroit and national media, UDM's marketing guru has made several appearances on CNN's "Talk Back Live," the Voice of America worldwide radio network (VOA), ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and on the pages of Sports Illustrated, Time, TV Guide, the New York Times, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post, to name a few. At University of Detroit Mercy, he has taught courses in Marketing Management, Consumer Behavior, Marketing Communications, Research and Corporate Social Responsibility and Sports and Entertainment Marketing. Michael Bernacchi can be reached at 313-993-1116 or Please appropriately attribute the following for their work on uNDER tHE mIKE-rOSCOPE: Yen Ju Lee Robert Rouse Vidhyasagar Natarajan Eric Baumgardner & Ian Young
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