Perhaps it was the appeal of host Seth MacFarlane, or the nominated movies that people tuned in to cheer for, but early numbers suggest that last night's Oscars broadcast was up from the 2012 ceremony. In fact, based on the data that's been posted, The 85th Academy Awards was the highest rated ceremony broadcast since 2007, six years ago.

Deadline posted the metered markets data from Nielsen this morning and last night's Oscars reportedly drew an averaged household rating of 26.6 with a 41 share. That's up over last year's 25.5 rating, and also manages to inch past 2010's 26.5 rating. Prior to that, the last time the Oscars earned higher numbers was in 2007 when Ellen Degeneres hosted and The Departed won best picture.

While the host likely draws their own audience, and Seth MacFarlane certainly has that, as the long-running animated comedy series Family Guy will attest, it seems a bit more probable that the boost in numbers is due to increased interest in the nominated actors and films. As Deadline points out, six of the nine Best Picture nominees topped $100 million at the box office, which translates to a lot of people having actually seen the nominated films, and thus, would likely be more interested in seeing which film won the top honors. The same would apply to the actors nominated, which included Jennifer Lawrence, who was nominated (and won) for Silver Linings Playbook, but is also the star of the hugely popular Hunger Games franchise.

We'll have to wait and see how the numbers shake out in millions. In the meantime, it's looking like this year's ceremony was a hit, at least by comparison to recent recent previous years.

Photo Credit ©ABC

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