NEW YORK - The 90th anniversary Academy Awards show comes a year after the biggest mistake in Oscar history, and Jimmy Kimmel returns as host.
He has been having plenty of fun joking about what happened with the Best Picture mix up, but behind the scenes, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has spent a year making sure it doesn't happen again.
Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway took the stage to announce the winner of the night's top award, and what happened next was unprecedented.
"La La Land," is what Dunaway read, and so it came to be the wrong picture was announced as the year's best. Then, three of the longest minutes in entertainment history passed before the mistake was finally corrected."
"I still can't explain how it happened," Kimmel said. "I know what happened, but I don't know how it did."
Kimmel was out of position in the audience for a closing gag with Matt Damon.
"Jimmy started going, 'Oh, hang on, wait a minute. Oh my God. Oh no. Oh no. Oh my God, I think they gave the wrong award,'" Damon said. "And I went, 'Stop it. Stop it.' And I looked up, and then all hell broke loose."
The card that was read came from the envelope for the Lead Actress winner category, which went to Emma Stone in "La La Land." That resulted in "La La Land" being briefly named Best Picture, before one of that film's producers revealed the error and that "Moonlight" had in fact won.
"And then I thought, 'Oh, I'm the host. I'm the only one with a microphone on. I guess I have to go up there,'" Kimmel said.
In a new Oscar commercial, Kimmel quips, "You know, I dream about it every night." He asks Warren Beatty, "What do I do?" and Beatty responds, "I don't care what you do just get out of my house."
Beatty gets credit for poking fun at the situation, but it's no laughing matter for accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers. They've counted the Oscar ballots for eight decades, and now, new measures are in place to avoid another embarrassing snafu.
First, the accountants who worked last year will not be back. Second, two stage-side partners will be overseeing the envelopes, with a third partner in the control room.
A new formal procedure will be in place for when envelopes are handed over, and accountants will also attend show rehearsals to practice what to do if something goes wrong.
And there will be no cell phones after the man from PwC was caught tweeting out a photo from backstage last year.
Perhaps the most important factor in avoiding mistakes will be the return of senior partner Rick Rojas, a veteran of many past Oscar shows. No mistakes ever happened on his watch.
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