ABC Sells Out Oscar Ad Slots

NEW YORK ABC on Friday said it has sold out its Feb. 25 telecast of the 79th annual Academy Awards, and while the network would not release a dollar amount, sources said 30-second ad spots sold for about $1.7 million.

Among this year’s advertisers are AT&T, Bank of America,, Coca-Cola, Dove, General Motors, J.C. Penney, Kodak, L’Oreal, Masterfoods, MasterCard, McDonald’s and Microsoft, the network said.

Over the past dozen years, the price of a 30-second spot in the Academy Awards telecast has more than doubled, from about $700,000 in 1995 to $1.6 million last year, according to a report issued by TNS Media Intelligence.

With the high price tag, though, comes less ad clutter, with viewers typically exposed to about 12 minutes of commercials per hour, compared to 14 minutes of commercial time per hour in the Super Bowl and a typical 18 minutes per hour in prime-time programming on the broadcast networks, the report said.

About one-third of Academy Awards advertisers each year have also bought slots on the Super Bowl, the report said, with that number peaking in 2003, when nine advertisers bought commercial time in both telecasts.

The top five advertisers in the Academy Awards over the past 12 years are General Motors, American Express and McDonald’s, which have each advertised every year; J.C. Penney, which has advertised in nine of the 12 years; and Pepsi, which has been in eight of the 12 years.

GM has spent $99.5 million over the past 12 years on Academy Awards spots; AmEx has spent $67.9 million; Pepsi has spent $61.5 million; Penney has spent $53.5 million; and McDonald’s has spent $31.5 million, TNS reported.

This story updates and replaces an item posted yesterday with the news that ABC has sold out commercial time on the telecast.