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Historical U.S. TV Ratings Olympics Opening Ceremonies
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Historical U.S. TV Ratings Olympics Opening Ceremonies

The opening ceremonies for the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta drew the largest U.S. television audience (39.7 million viewers) of any recent Summer Games.

In comparison, the broadcast of the most recent Summer Olympics opening ceremonies — Athens, 2004 — drew 25.3 million U.S. viewers.

DATE / TIME YEAR / LOCATION NETWORK VIEWERS (P2+)
25 July / 8pm – 12am 1992 / Barcelona NBC 21,609,000
19 July / 8pm – 12:45am 1996 / Atlanta NBC 39,767,000
15 Sept. / 8pm – 11:36pm 2000 / Sydney NBC 27,275,000
13 Aug. / 8pm – 11:49pm 2004 / Athens NBC 25,384,000
Source: The Nielsen Company