Last night “La La Land” was announced by presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway as the winner of Best Picture at the 2017 Academy Awards. Beatty and Dunaway read from the wrong envelope, and the category’s actual winner, “Moonlight,” wasn’t announced until the cast and producers of “La La Land” had already taken the stage and began their acceptance speeches.
Entertainment Tonight co-host Kevin Frazier joined The Jim Rome Show on Monday and explained how a mistake of that magnitude could happen in what is being widely-considered as the biggest gaffe in Oscars history.
“There’s a duplicate of every envelope for every category. One is on the left side of the stage. One is on the right side of the stage,” Frazier said. “So as you’re going along, you have to keep up and make sure you don’t make a mistake.
“Warren Beatty walked out with the duplicate envelope from the category beforehand, and that’s why he was so confused when he stood on that stage, because he had an envelope that said ‘Emma Stone, La La Land.’ He didn’t know what to do, and he turned and he looked, and I think he was looking for help from Faye Dunaway, and instead, she was just like Warren come on man, you’re killing us, they want to get off the air, “La La Land”, and all hell breaks loose.”
Frazier didn’t sound surprised that the mishap happened and pointed a majority of the blame towards the accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers and the envelope distribution as opposed to Beatty and Dunaway.
“It’s a miracle that something like that hasn’t happened before,” Frazier said. “If you have one job in this world, just one at the Oscars, is to make sure the right envelope gets in the right hand, and you are from PricewaterhouseCoopers, then you don’t let anybody else touch that envelope. You make sure you watch it go into the hand, and somewhere down the road somebody messed up and let the wrong envelope get into Warren Beatty’s hand.”
Frazier said someone will be held accountable for the gaffe.
“A lot of people make a lot of money working the Oscars, a lot of money. And people are not going to let their pay day get messed up by one person. So someone will take the fall,” Frazier said. “Whether it’s a stage manager or whether it is PricewaterhouseCoopers someone is going to take the fall, and they’re going to take a big, big, big hit. Someone will lose a job. That’s the way it goes down, and that’s the way it happens. You don’t get away from that one scot free.”
As for Beatty and Conaway, if Frazier were calling the shots, he’d have them present again in 2018.
“I’d have them back next year to do it again and get it right,” Frazier said. “I say we’re bringing it back, we’re going to do it one more time, and this year we’re going to get it right. You owe it to them and you owe it to yourself. Just like Steve Harvey came back to Miss Universe after his gaffe.”