How to watch the 2022 Academy Awards for free—and without cable

March 27, 2022, 9:00 PM UTC

Hollywood, aided by Spider-Man, came back in a big way in 2022—and it’s ready to party. Unfortunately, the 2022 celebration of the film industry is already mired in controversy. 

The 2022 Academy Awards will bring back some of the glitz that missing last year, but an effort to streamline this year’s Oscars (and boost ratings) has met with significant blowback. On Feb. 22, the Academy announced the awards for documentary short, film editing, makeup/hairstyling, original score, production design, animated short, live-action short and sound would be handed out prior to the broadcast ceremonies. Acceptance speeches, it said, would be edited into the live telecast.

This infuriated many filmmakers and technical staff, who feel their work is not appreciated or respected by the Academy. At least one board member has resigned because of the decision.

Viewers will likely look past the squabble, though, with a bigger eye on who will take home the Oscar in high-profile categories such as best actor/actress and best picture. Netflix’s The Power of the Dog has the most nominations—12 in total. That was followed by Dune (with 10) and Steven Spielberg’s remake of West Side Story, with 7 nominations. It’s Apple’s CODA that seems to have momentum going into the show, though.

This is the 94th year the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has honored the best films and performances of the year. Whether you’re pulling for a favorite film or just want to debate the fashions of the evening, it’s typically one of the biggest television events of the year.

Got questions about this year’s Oscars ceremony or wondering how best to watch? We’ve got answers.  

When do the Oscars take place?

The 94th Academy Awards ceremony will be held Sunday, March 27 at 8:00 p.m. ET

Where can I watch the 2022 Academy Awards?

ABC once again has exclusive broadcast rights to this year’s Oscars. Expect other networks to provide Red Carpet coverage outside of the Dolby Theater as well, though.

What time does red carpet coverage of the 2022 Academy Awards begin?

After streamlining the red carpet in 2021, the Academy will bring back the spectacle this year. (And you likely won’t see as many masks as you did last year.) You’ll have plenty of places to watch, too

ABC began airing its “On the Red Carpet Live! Countdown to the Oscars” pre-show at 1:00 p.m. ET on the network and started streaming it on ABC News Live at 4:30 p.m. ET.

The larger “Oscars Red Carpet Show” airs on ABC at 6:30 p.m. ET.

Separately, “E!’s Brunch at the Oscars” pre-show started at 2:00 p.m. ET. And at 5:00 p.m. ET, E! will switch to live Red Carpet arrivals on “E! Live from the Red Carpet”.

How will the 2022 Academy Awards be different?

Well, for one thing, they’re not being held in a train station this year. (To promote social distancing in 2021, the show was held in Los Angeles’ Union Station). They’ll also have a host once again. And the show should be shorter, due to the elimination of eight categories from the live broadcast, including film editing and original score.

How can I watch the Academy Awards for free if I don’t have cable?

If you don’t have a cable or satellite subscription, the best way to watch any network program for free on a big screen is with a good HD antenna. The 2022 Oscars will be broadcast by ABC—meaning you can watch everything over the air, which costs nothing beyond the equipment prices. Be sure to test the antenna in multiple locations in your home to find the most reliable signal.

How can I stream the Academy Awards live online if I don’t have a cable subscription?

There are loads of online options to watch the Oscars, some completely free and others with free trial periods. If you’re not near a TV, you can log into ABC.com to watch the show. Don’t have a cable subscription (which you’ll need to watch the official stream online)? Here are a few other options that work just as well.

Hulu with Live TV

You can try the service free for a week. Once that’s up, you’ll pay $65 per month.

YouTubeTV

After a two-week trial, you can expect monthly charges of $65.

Sling TV

Dish Network’s Sling lower tiered “Orange” plan will run you $35 per month. Adding the more comprehensive “Blue” plan bumps the cost to $50-per-month. The service recently did away with its free trial, but is offering $10 off the first month of the combined packages.

AT&T TV

Formerly known as DirecTV Now and AT&T TVNow, AT&T’s streaming service will run you $70 per month and up. There is no longer a free trial option.

Disney+

Disney’s bundle of Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+ has also done away with its free trial, unfortunately. A plan that includes live TV starts at $70 per month.

Who’s hosting the 2022 Academy Awards?

After three years without a host, the Oscars are bringing back a master of ceremonies this year—three of them, in fact. Comedians Wanda Sykes and Amy Schumer and actress Regina Hall will host the show. (Jimmy Kimmel was the last live host in 2018.) It has been 35 years since the Academy last had three people host the show. That show, in 1987, was shepherded by Goldie Hawn, Chevy Chase and Paul Hogan.

Where can I watch this year’s Best Picture nominees?

Belfast (Universal Pictures)

Where to watch: Currently in theaters, it’s not on any streaming service, but can be rented or purchased on Amazon Prime Video, iTunes and Google Play.

CODA (Apple TV+)

Where to watch: Apple TV+
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0pmfrE1YL4I

Don’t Look Up (Netflix)

Where to watch: Netflix

Dune (Warner Bros.)

Where to watch: HBO Max

Drive My Car (Bitters End)

Where to watch: HBO Max

King Richard (Warner Bros.)

Where to watch: HBO Max

Licorice Pizza (United)

Where to watch: Currently in theaters, it’s not currently on any streaming service, but can be rented or purchased on Amazon Prime Video, iTunes and Google Play.

Nightmare Alley ( Searchlight Pictures)

Where to watch: Streaming on Hulu and HBO Max.

The Power of the Dog (Netflix)

Where to watch: Netflix

Promising Young Woman (Focus Features)

Where to watch: HBO Max

West Side Story (20th Century Studios)

Where to watch: Streaming on Disney+ and HBO Max.

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