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Warren Beatty To Academy President: “Publicly Clarify What Happened As Soon As Possible”

Deadline logo Deadline 2/28/2017 Erik Pedersen
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Another day, another statement from a party involved in the Mother of All Oscar Screw-ups. Warren Beatty, who was on stage to present the Best Picture trophy when everything fell apart, today called out Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs to explain the snafu. Like now.

“Rather than for me to respond to questions from the press about the Academy ceremony,” he said in a statement to the Associated Press, “I feel it would be more appropriate for the president of the Academy, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, to publicly clarify what happened as soon as possible.”

End of statement.

The Academy, for its part, issued a statement last night that said, “We deeply regret the mistake” and went on to mentioned the Oscar-winning filmmaker and his Bonnie and Clyde co-star by name. “To all involved —  including our presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway, the filmmakers, and our fans watching worldwide —  we apologize,” the group said.

That followed a statement by Oscar accounts PricewaterhouseCoopers, which accepted responsibility for the gaffe. The firm later issued a second apology, but its U.S. Chairman then canceled an appearance on CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360° about 45 minutes before the show. That led host Anderson Cooper to proclaim on-air that Ryan stiffed his show “apparently on orders from the Academy. So the plot thickens.”

All this, of course, is part of the lingering fallout from Sunday night’s ghastly goof in which Beatty began to read the Best Picture winner, paused, looked around, then handed the envelope to Dunaway, who announced La La Land for the Big Prize. Shortly thereafter, once the “Oscar-winning” team from Damien Chazelle’s musical had taken the stage, chaos set in when a do-over gave the coveted statuette to the producers behind Moonlight.

And so ended the Oscar night that will live in infamy.

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