NEW YORK - Ratings for the Academy Awards telecast in the nation's biggest television markets are up 7 percent over last year.
The Nielsen company said Monday that New York, Kansas City, Mo., and Chicago were the strongest markets for Sunday's telecast, where "12 Years a Slave" won the Academy Award for best picture.
Nielsen's estimate for how many people actually watched the show was expected later Monday. The Oscars are frequently the second most-watched television program of the year after the Super Bowl, with viewership topping 40 million people last year.
Overnight ratings in the nation's 56 biggest markets are only a partial picture, however, and sometimes not reflective of the country as a whole.