With the Oscars 2018 (opens in new tab) kicking off this weekend, you're probably thinking back to last year's awards ceremony and one particular, unforgettable moment. That's right, I'm talking about the Best Picture mix-up which saw a Hollywood-style screw-up of epic proportions as La La Land (opens in new tab) was incorrectly announced as Best Picture instead of the actual winner - Moonlight (opens in new tab).
So… what exactly went down? Let’s go through it step by agonising step and keep our fingers crossed that it doesn't happen to any of the Oscar winners 2018 (opens in new tab):
It’s probably best to start with the moment itself, if you can bear to look from through your fingers. Yes, it really is as toe-curling and embarrassing as it appears.
On a second-look (once you know what’s coming), you can see Warren Beatty take way too long to read the envelope, a sure-fire sign that someone messed up big time. Despite checking constantly, he hands over to Faye Dunaway who blurts out La La Land. Oops!
In a twist ending straight out of the big book of Hollywood clichés, it turned out that Moonlight actually won Best Picture – cue laughter and a few gasps. They’ll make a movie about this one day…
Watching the #Oscars producers slowly tell the #LaLaLand team they didn't win Best Picture is WILD. Keep your eyes on the background pic.twitter.com/3TRUWZAMjHFebruary 27, 2017
It turns out that the blame lies with an accountancy firm, PricewaterhouseCoopers, who set into motion one of the biggest errors in Oscars history, all thanks to a rogue envelope...
pic.twitter.com/oGJkXytnQ2February 27, 2017
This from #PricewaterhouseCoopers explains why there would be two "Actress in a Leading Role” envelopes. pic.twitter.com/XyyzXmEtfBFebruary 27, 2017
It would be best to remove any tin foil hats, though, as two Oscars producers have duplicates of envelopes and are waiting at opposite ends of the stage in case one set of envelopes goes missing. Mystery solved.
Even better (or worse if you’re an Oscars producer) is that Warren Beatty was handed the envelope for Best Actress, which was already handed out to Emma Stone earlier in the evening, hence the confusion and hullabaloo.
Proof Warren Beatty was given the "Actress In A Leading Role" envelope. Yep, someone is getting fired at @TheAcademy. #BestPicture #Oscars pic.twitter.com/dDmHLwocnvFebruary 27, 2017
But the real hero was the La La Land producer Jordan Horowitz who ran on strange to proclaim that Moonlight won after being told by a stagehand and “That it’s not a joke.” He even showed off the winning card as proof:
WHAT pic.twitter.com/ehIOvSz2iWFebruary 27, 2017
Thankfully, everyone took it in good spirits, probably helped by the fact that La La Land had already picked up its fair share of Oscars. Emma Stone reacted with good graces, in her own NSFW style.
emma addressing the mix up #Oscars pic.twitter.com/ewfandcLs0February 27, 2017
M. Night Shyamalan himself couldn’t have made it up... or did he?
I wrote the ending of the academy awards 2017. @jimmykimmel we really got them!February 27, 2017
The internet, as ever, were sharp as a tack in their responses:
"I switched the envelopes" #BestPicture #Oscars pic.twitter.com/ISU6xSj0zFFebruary 27, 2017
This whole thing was not Moonlight's fault. The Jackson 5 were very clear about that.February 27, 2017
And, hey, at least the Moonlight cast have a story to dine out on for a long, long time.
WHOLESOME CAST REACTION TO THE MOONLIGHT MIXUP pic.twitter.com/k8883FRYfrFebruary 27, 2017
Images: ABC/The Academy