Recession Hits the Oscars— Sort Of

Revenue is down, parties are scaling back
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 20, 2009 10:57 AM CST
Wolfgang Puck holds a plate of mini kobe cheeseburgers next to a tray of completely edible 24-carat gold solid chocolate Oscars last year. This year, he's going organic for the Governors Ball menu.   (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)
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(Newser) – Even the Oscars are feeling the economic strain, People reports. Sure, there are still dozens of parties planned on the big day, but organizers are pumping up the “greenness” of the soirées and downplaying the extravagance—Vanity Fair is using decorations from past events. Even those not scaling back are adopting a “quiet and Zen-like” atmosphere “that is reflective of the hard times going on out there,” says one chairperson.

The partying celebs may have to do with less swag, but ABC execs will certainly have to do without (as much) revenue, the Los Angeles Times reports. A 30-second ad still costs between $1.4 and $1.7 million, compared to last year’s $1.8 million, but even that drop is meaningful for a show that seemed invincible. The telecast is expected to bring in $68 million in revenue—a 16% decline.