Despite blunder, PWC to continue work for Oscars but without cellphones

Despite blunder, PWC to continue work for Oscars but without cellphones

Despite blunder, PWC to continue work for Oscars but without cellphones

Backstage at the Oscars on February 26, longtime PwC accountant Brian Cullinan mistakenly gave the wrong envelope to presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway before the two actors erroneously announced La La Land as best picture. Presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway were handed the wrong envelope by PwC executives - who give out the envelopes on the night - causing them to erroneously announce La La Land as the victor, when in fact Moonlight had scooped the big award.

At a board meeting on Tuesday, the Academy's Board of Governors decided not to fire PricewaterhouseCoopers, which has taken responsibility for the envelope mishap that led to the wrong film being declared Best Picture earlier this year.

Brian Cullinan was the accountant who handed the wrong envelope to actor Warren Beatty.

In the wake of the incident, CNN reported that the firm took "full responsibility" and removed the two responsible accountants from future awards shows. Boone Isaacs blamed his distraction for error.

The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences issued a statement following a board meeting to discuss new protocols for the voting and victor announcements.

Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty announced La La Land had won the best picture Oscar before Moonlight was revealed as the real victor.

Still, even after that, it was unclear whether PwC would stay on as the Academy's balloting partner, with many speculating that the mistake, the first of its kind in the show's history, would prove unforgivable.

PwC's United States chairman and senior partner Tim Ryan will take a "greater oversight role" at ceremonies in the future, with a third person from PwC in the control room with the director, who has knowledge of the winners, throughout the telecast. Besides banning cellphones, the academy is adding a third balloting partner to the telecast, and bringing in PwC's USA chairman to provide oversight. Boone Isaacs' new protocols reportedly call for a third balloting partner with knowledge of the winners to sit with the telecast director going forward. Balloting partners will also be required to participate in Oscar rehearsals, she said.

The Academy also plans to regularly review its relationship with PwC to avoid another chaotic moment happening again.

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