Representatives for the Oscars’ accountancy firm have “sincerely” apologised for the mix-up which lead to La La Land being announced as Best Picture winner instead of Moonlight.
During the finale of the Academy Awards, Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway announced La La Land as the winner of the Best Picture prize because they had mistakenly been given the Actress in a Leading Role card, which had the names “Emma Stone” and “La La Land” on it.
While the La La Land producers were accepting the prize, they became aware of the mistake and Jordan Horowitz announced that Moonlight was the actual winner. As the Moonlight crew made it to the stage, Warren explained what had happened.
Representatives for PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), who have been in charge of counting the Oscars votes and handing out the envelopes for 80 years, have now issued an apology for the blunder.
“We sincerely apologise to Moonlight, La La Land, Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, and Oscar viewers for the error that was made during the award announcement for Best Picture… The presenters had mistakenly been given the wrong category envelope and when discovered, was immediately corrected.
We are currently investigating how this could have happened, and deeply regret that this occurred.
“We appreciate the grace with which the nominees, the Academy, ABC, and (host) Jimmy Kimmel handled the situation.”
PwC partners Martha Ruiz and Brian Cullinan, who are in charge of counting votes, had posed on the red carpet with briefcases containing the winners earlier that evening. According to reports, two sets of each category are made, with Martha spotted on stage during the Best Picture commotion.
In the days before the ceremony, Martha had told The Huffington Post that they both check the envelopes multiple times and are “very confident they’re getting the right envelopes and the contents in them are accurate.”
Explaining what happened, Warren said, “I opened the envelope and it said Emma Stone, La La Land.
That’s why I took such a long look at Faye and at you (Jimmy). I wasn’t trying to be funny. Thank you very much. This is Moonlight, the best picture.”
Faye told The Telegraph afterwards, “The card read that way. It was a very odd thing… It wasn’t Warren’s fault.”