“There’s a mistake,” said La La Land producer Jordan Horowitz as he went straight back to the mic upon realizing that Moonlight had won.
The announcement blunder, which will definitely go down in Oscars history, is the Ms. Universe/Steve Harvey screw-up of the awards season. Apparently, two envelopes are prepared for each category and Best Picture Award presenters, Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway, were given the unopened Best Actress envelope. In the Academy Awards history, a mistake such as this has only happened once before. The other announcement mishap was in 1964 when Sammy Davis, Jr. got the wrong envelope for two music categories.
Witness the whole confusion below.
Warren Beatty who looked utterly contrite on the mix-up explained that he was given the envelope for Actress In A Leading Role. “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 (the audience). I wasn’t trying to be funny.”
Producers of the show and an accountant from Price Waterhouse Coopers went immediately up to the stage. However, they weren’t that quick enough to undo what’s been done after having La La Land producer Jordan Horowitz give his entire acceptance speech.
Best Supporting Actor of the night, Mahershala Ali, was asked about the incident. He tells BBC that it was very hard to take joy from a moment like that.
And then when they said ‘Moonlight you guys have won’, it just threw me a bit – more than a bit – because I didn’t want to go up there and take something from somebody. And It’s very hard to take joy from a moment like that. But I feel very fortunate for all of us to walk away with best picture.
Imagine if this happened to an acting category and you’d have to break the news to an emotional actor mid-speech. YIKES!