Belfast Telegraph

Accountant at centre of Oscars blunder feeling 'very terrible'

By PA Reporters

A high-flying accountant who caused chaos at the Oscars after handing Warren Beatty an envelope from the wrong pile feels "very terrible and horrible", a boss at the firm responsible for the ballot has said. The climax of the Academy Awards fell victim to "human error", leading to La La Land being mistakenly named the winner of the top gong, according to Tim Ryan, US chairman and senior partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

The cream of Hollywood, along with millions of viewers around the world, were left squirming in their seats as the hit musical's producers handed over the statue to the real winners, the people behind Moonlight. Emma Stone, named best actress for her turn in La La Land, reportedly described it as "one of the most horrible moments of my life". Mr Ryan told Variety magazine that moments earlier Brian Cullinan, one of two PwC accountants responsible for the presenters' envelopes, gave Beatty the wrong one as the Hollywood star took to the stage with Faye Dunaway.

"There's a stack for the back-ups and the ones that are not the back-ups and he took from the wrong stack," he said.

Mr Ryan told the magazine Mr Cullinan, chairman of PwC's US board, was left feeling "very, very terrible and horrible", and repeated the firm's apologies for the historic mix-up.

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