89th Academy Award experiences historical envelop mishap | This is Africa


89th Academy Award experiences historical envelop mishap

For the entirety of its existence, the Oscars had never had such an embarrassing gaffe until this year’s edition when the award for the Best Picture category was given to La La Land instead of Moonlight. It was an incident that left the whole social media agog. Many questions were raised and some were answered, followed with profuse apologies.



In what turned out to be an emotional filled 89th Academy Awards ceremony, and one reminiscent of Steve Harvey’s Miss World 2016 wrong announcement of the Miss World title Faye Dunaway on stage with Warren Beatty made a grave error, announcing La La Land as the Academy Award for Best Picture category, instead of Moonlight.

The gaffe has been described as the “hysterical goof-up in the Oscars’ history”.

The hall erupted into cheers and jubilation with congratulatory messages going to the La La Land cast that made its way to the stage. Not before long as the producers of La La Land were giving their acceptance speeches, it was announced that the wrong envelope had been read out and the Academy Award for Best Picture category was Moonlight.

The stunned audience and newly announced winners had to be convinced with repeated instructions from La La Land producer Jordan Horwitz saying, “it’s not a joke.”


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Beatty then explained that he had been handed an envelope that said: Emma Stone, La La Land for best actress. His claim was supported by PriceWaterhouseCoopers, the accounting firm that tallies the Oscar results, and the Academy of Motion Pictures and Sciences when it released a statement of apology.

It read: “We sincerely apologize 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, were 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 Jimmy Kimmel handled the situation,” the apology noted.


So far Beatty has been receiving blame and messages of support for the mistake. Many have said the 79 year old veteran actor shouldn’t be blamed as he wasn’t the one that made the announcement.

Beatty held on to the wrong envelop that was given to him as proof that it was indeed not a mistake from him.

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The disbelief with which the gaffe was greeted by the audience left the hall feeling a little awkward with both nominees standing on stage.


Beatty explained to the audience: “I want to tell you what happened. I opened the envelope and it said: Emma Stone, La La Land. And that is why I took such a long look at Faye and at you.

“I wasn’t trying to be funny. This is Moonlight for best picture”.

But Twitter was ablaze with all sorts of memes and comments.





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