Written by Ethan Mort and Meaghan Walsh

The 95th Oscars aired on ABC earlier this month, where ten critically acclaimed films battled it out on the red carpet for the top prize of Best Picture. The award was won by Everything Everywhere All At Once, however out of its other nominees this year, the movie had one of the least amount of airings. The Best Picture nominees with the most airings were Top Gun Maverick with 32K, Avatar: The Way of Water with 30K, Elvis with 15K and The Fabelmans with 10K. 

A bar chart showing the top airing Best Picture nominees

A bar chart showing the top airing Best Picture nominees

With the advent of streaming platforms, advertising strategies has changed for these blockbuster movies. Films now air ads prior to the movie’s theatrical release, the immediate aftermath after the release, the movie’s digital or physical at home release, a streaming platform release, and when an Oscar nominee—for your consideration ads highlighting the film’s potential to be an award winner. 

Top Gun Maverick

Top Gun Maverick had the most airings out of this year’s nominees for Best Picture, at 32K airings spread out across nearly a year of advertising. Advertising for this film began in April, with an ad announcing a new extended trailer. Between April and the movie’s release on May 27th, there were 13K airings, and then 6K airings in the weeks following its release, including this one in Spanish. In July, the film released one ad, suggesting to celebrate July 4th by going into the theaters to watch the movie. Later in July, there were there were 14k airings advertising Top Gun Maverick's digital release. When the movie launched on Paramount Plus in December, there were 850 airings. Beginning in February, Top Gun Maverick began its Oscars’ advertising push. There were 400 airings highlighting the film’s Oscar nominations, including for Best Picture and Best Original Song. 


Advertising for the much anticipated sequel to Avatar, Avatar: The Way of Water, began in the end of October. From October to the end of the year, there were approximately 23K ads advertising the film’s release on December 16th. After the film’s release, there were approximately 3k ads advertising that the movie was now in theaters. Beginning in January, and running into the end of the month, there were 38 airings of this ad highlighting its awards and asking for consideration in all categories. From mid-February to the beginning of March. there were 78 airings of this ad highlighting it was an Oscar nominee for Best Picture. 


In the lead up to Elvis’ release in June, there were approximately 13K airings advertising the movie shortly coming to the theaters. In August, and September, there were 72 airings advertising the film’s digital release. From February to March, there were 506 airings of a “For your consideration” ad for the film’s Oscar nominations. There was one version of an ad that ended with the usual “for your consideration” and another version asking the Academy to consider Austin Butler’s nomination for Best Actor. Both ads feature Austin Butler’s nomination heavily, instead of the film’s other nominations, such as Best Picture. 

The Fabelmans 

With the film’s release on November 24thth there were 8K airings of ads for The Fabelmans’ upcoming theatrical release. Beginning in December, the film made a new advertising push with 1300 airings highlighting its Golden Globe nominations and its launch on digital platforms. In late February, there was another new ad created for the film that boasted its Oscar nominations including Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Director, and Best Picture. 

Interested in another advertising analysis of another big televised event? Check out our analysis on the Super Bowl.

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