ENTERTAINMENT
02/27/2017 05:13 pm ET Updated Feb 28, 2017

PwC Confirms Partner Responsible For Best Picture Mishap

Brian Cullinan handed the wrong envelope to Warren Beatty at the Oscars on Sunday. The Academy said it will determine next steps soon.

The Oscar flub heard ‘round the world may have happened because of a tweet, reports say.

A PricewaterhouseCoopers spokesperson confirmed to The Huffington Post that Brian Cullinan, a managing partner at PwC, was responsible for handing Warren Beatty the wrong envelope, which led to the Best Picture winner debacle. 

Three minutes before the envelope was handed off, Cullinan tweeted out a photo of Emma Stone with her new Oscar.

Cullinan shared the since-deleted tweet at 9:05 p.m. PT ― Beatty and co-presenter Faye Dunaway would take the stage to present Best Picture at 9:08pm PST. 

The archived tweet can be seen below: 

Cullinan accidentally gave Beatty a duplicate copy of the envelope containing Stone’s name as Best Actress. That duplicate was supposed to be thrown away. Not realizing it was the wrong envelope, Dunaway announced “La La Land” as the winner, when “Moonlight” was actually the Academy’s choice.

In a blog written for The Huffington Post earlier this year, Cullinan indicated that he and Martha Ruiz, another accountant responsible for the envelopes, “don’t leave for the entire show ― not even for a bathroom break!”

“We’re so focused on doing our jobs that we don’t mind the hours of standing,” he said.

Cullinan also told HuffPost mere days ago that it would be “so unlikely” for a presenter to announce the wrong winner.

PricewaterhouseCoopers has already issued a statement regarding the mishap, but there has been no word from Cullinan on what happened or why he deleted his tweets. 

The PwC spokesperson would “not comment on Brian’s tweet,” but we will keep an eye out for any other updates.

UPDATE: The Academy released a statement Monday night apologizing for the Best Picture snafu, saying it had spent the day investigating what went wrong and will decide on the next steps. 

We deeply regret the mistakes that were made during the presentation of the Best Picture category during last night’s Oscar ceremony ... For the last 83 years, the Academy has entrusted PwC to handle the critical tabulation process, including the accurate delivery of results. PwC has taken full responsibility for the breaches of established protocols that took place during the ceremony. We have spent last night and today investigating the circumstances, and will determine what actions are appropriate going forward. 

HuffPost

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