General News

American Music Awards Score Lowest Ratings Ever

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Jan 15, 2003 | 11:06am EST

Not even the Osbournes could save this one.

The 30th annual American Music Awards, which were telecast Monday on ABC, pulled in the lowest-ever ratings for the ceremony, according to Nielsen. The show attracted an overall average audience of 12.9 million--a 19 percent slide from last year's show.

The ceremony was hosted by the popular Osbourne clan, including Jack, Kelly, Sharon and Ozzy. But the fact that some of the AMA's biggest winners, such as Eminem, the Dixie Chicks and Creed, were conspicuously missing from the ceremony may have contributed to the soft ratings.

The show did manage to stir up a bit of controversy though, despite rapper Eminem's absenteeism. Comedian Kathy Griffin griped to AP Radio about American Idol host Ryan Seacrest's decision to expose her black lace bra.

While they were announcing the Fan's Choice Award winner, Griffin pretended to read an e-mail that asked her to flash the audience. Seacrest then reached over and unbuttoned her blouse--a bit that Griffin told reporters backstage wasn't scripted.

"Ryan Seacrest physically assaulted me on stage. Follow me to the precinct, he's going down," she told AP Radio. "Look, maybe I did walk up the freaking stairs like Shania. But Ryan Seacrest took my top off! That would never happen to Shania."

Griffin's lingerie, however, was no match for Fox's limited-run reality series Joe Millionaire, the network's twisted take on the ABC hit The Bachelor. Joe dominated its hour, leading the Monday 9 p.m. slot with 17.53 million viewers. Combined with the scores from Fox's Boston Public, the network won Monday night in most key measures, Variety reports.

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