The 89th Academy Awards 2017 ended on a highly dramatic note. Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway were on stage to announce the award for the best picture. When Beatty opened the envelope on stage, he appeared to be confused. It appeared that he couldn’t exactly read what was written. Dunaway ended up making the La La Land announcement. The crew of La La Land was on stage to accept the award amidst loud cheer, and producer Jordan Horowitz started his acceptance speech. And then he realised that there has been a mistake. He was interrupted and was informed that it’s not his film La La Land, but Moonlight that has won the Oscar 2017 for Best Picture. Apparently, Beatty had been handed over the wrong envelope with Emma Stone’s name on it, who won the award for Best Actress.
And now it has been revealed that one of the Pricewaterhouse Coopers (which has been overseeing Academy Awards balloting for 83 years) accountants, Brian Cullinan, is the one to be blamed! Cullinan was responsible for handing out the sealed envelopes to the presenters but he got busy enjoying his fan boy moment backstage, clicking pictures with Best Actress Emma Stone. Next, he wanted to share the picture with the world and got on to Twitter to post the picture – just minutes before the gaffe. ALSO READ: Oscars 2017: Farhan Akhtar, Karan Johar, Farah Khan – Bollywood celebs have the best reactions on Warren Beatty’s Moonlight – La La Land gaffe
The photo was later deleted from Brian’s Twitter account, but was still viewable on Monday on a cached archive of the page. Lack of alertness on his part lead to the big goof-up on the Oscars 2017 stage. When several media outlets in the West tried to get in touch with PwC, they chose not to respond on Cullinan’s tweet, nor his role in the envelope fiasco. Even Cullinan could not immediately be reached for comment.
Soon after this disaster, Warren was back on stage to admit the mistake. Naturally, everyone in the audience was left gasping in horror, stunned by the mishap. While there are a lot of jokes and memes floating around on the internet ever since the fiasco, some brand management experts are calling this a bot of a branding tragedy. “This is not advanced math. PwC had to get the right name in the right envelope and get it to the right person,” Tim Calkins, a marketing professor at Northwestern University was quoted.