As expected, Danny Boyle’s Olympics Opening Ceremony was a big ratings hit for the BBC last night, handily outperforming any other Games curtain-raiser in recent memory. The program captured an average 22.4M viewers and an 82.5% audience share. The average rating is the highest for the channel since 1998. Athens’ 2004 Opening Ceremony scored an average audience of 8.7M for a 41% share in primetime while the lauded Beijing opener in 2008 had a 51% share, but only 5.1M average viewers given it aired in the middle of the UK day. Last night’s opener began at 9pm local time and peaked for 5 minutes at 9:45pm with 26.9M tuning in to see Boyle’s Isles Of Wonder which featured a parachuting Queen, flying Mary Poppinses, a Mr Bean/Chariots Of Fire montage and a performance by Paul McCartney. The BBC’s most recent comparable 5-minute peak was 23.2M viewers during the England v Italy Euro 2012 match in June. Online viewing was 1M+, the BBC said.
Danny Boyle Scores 14-Year BBC Ratings High With London Olympics Opener
What's Hot on Deadline
'Castle' Star Stana Katic On What Made Her Stay, Big Season 8 "Event" And Her Future On The Show & Beyond
Oscar Shamed As BBC List Of 100 Greatest American Films Largely Ignores Academy's Best Picture Winners And Nominees
Nicolle Wallace Axed As 'The View' Regular After Proving Herself Insufficiently Shrill And Kardashian Illiterate