No Cell Phones For Accountants Backstage At Future Oscars

Getty final

Getty final

Remember when La La Land was accidentally announced as the victor of Best Picture at the Oscars, when it was really supposed to go to Moonlight? In addition, a third balloting leader privy to the results will be seated in the control room to ensure a more rapid response to mistakes in the future; the accountants will take part in the rehearsals; and all accountants will have to hand over their electronic devices before going anywhere near the Oscars stage.

"I'm sorry, there's a mistake", said Beatty addressing the gathering of A-listers and a viewing audience of millions. In their place, PwC partner Rick Rosas, who handled the ballots from 2002 to 2013, will return to the Dolby Theatre along with another accountant to be named at a later date.

FILE - In this February 26, 2017, file photo, PwC accountant Brian Cullinan, center, holds red envelopes under his arm while using his cell phone backstage at the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. It's thought the PriceWaterhouseCoopers accountant who screwed up was distracted because he was tweeting pictures of winners, including Emma Stone, minutes before the screw up.

The snafu marked the most embarrassing mistake in Oscars history, with the musical "La La Land" briefly declared the victor for best picture before organizers realized the error.

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President Cheryl Boone Isaacs wrote a letter to Academy members explaining that the Academy had been "unsparing in our assessment that the mistake made by representatives of the firm was unacceptable".

It later emerged that the veteran presenters had been handed the wrong cue card by accountants Brian Cullinan and Martha Ruiz, who were responsible for counting the votes and personally handing the closely guarded envelopes to each award presenter just before they walked on stage.

"After a thorough review, including an extensive presentation of revised protocols and ambitious controls, the Board has made a decision to continue working with PwC", the letter read.

The Hollywood Reporter added that Cullinan, whose social media activity was previously known to organizers, was told to abstain from backstage cellphone usage at the 2017 ceremony, but he "disobeyed" orders.

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