2017 Oscar Blunder Recap – That Happened

It may have been one of the biggest awards blunders in Oscar history. The Best Picture award announced the wrong winner. It didn’t take long for the confusion to be noticed as stagehand went on stage to inform the producers of La La Land that Moonlight was the actual winner. It was unfortunate for both producing teams. La La Land began their acceptance speech only to be told they lost.  It also took the moment away from Moonlight.  
After La La Land producer Jordan Horowitz learned that they were not the legitimate winner, he took over the mic and said “I’m sorry, no, there’s been a mistake. Moonlight, you guys won Best Picture. This is not a joke. Come up here.” He grabbed the card and held it so that the audience could see that Moonlight was in fact the winner. 

This was the first time in Oscar history that a losing nominee announced the winner of their own category. Maybe this could be a thing? Horowitz handled it gracefully and remained calm. Jimmy Kimmel did a great job keeping things in line and allowing Warren Beatty to explain what happened. He had the card for Best Actress and knew that it was not correct. He went to show Faye Dunaway that it was wrong, but she went ahead and announced La La Land as the winner. It turns out that they print two card, one for each side of the stage. Beatty was inadvertently given the wrong card. 

Sure it was a debacle, but it will go down as one of the greatest moments in Oscar history and the best part is that the better film won Best Picture. 


2017 Oscar Winners

Actor in a Supporting Role
Mahershala Ali

Makeup and Hairstyling
Suicide Squad

Costume Design
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Documentary Feature
OJ: Made in America

Sound Editing

Sound Mixing
Hacksaw Ridge

Actress in a Supporting Role
Viola Davis

Foreign Language Film
The Salesman

Animated Short Film

Animation Feature Film

Production Design
La La Land

Visual Effects
The Jungle Book

Film Editing
Hacksaw Ridge

Documentary Short Subject
The White Helmets

Live Action Short Film

La La Land

Original Score
La La Land

Original Song
City of Stars, La La Land

Original Screenplay
Manchester by the Sea

Adapted Screenplay

Damian Chazelle, La La Land

Actor in a Leading Role
Casey Affleck

Actress in a Leading Role
Emma Stone, La La Land

Best Picture

Oscar Nominee Breaks Rules and is Removed

The sound mixing nomination for Greg P. Russell was rescinded on Saturday. 
Official Academy Press Release: 

LOS ANGELES, CA – Upon recommendation by the Sound Branch Executive Committee, the Academy’s Board of Governors voted Thursday (2/23) to rescind the Sound Mixing nomination for Greg P. Russell from “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” for violation of Academy campaign regulations. The decision was prompted by the discovery that Russell had called his fellow members of the Sound Branch during the nominations phase to make them aware of his work on the film, in direct violation of a campaign regulation that prohibits telephone lobbying. An additional nominee for “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” will not be named in his place. The remaining Sound Mixing nominees for the film are Gary Summers, Jeffrey J. Haboush and Mac Ruth.

“The Board of Governors’ decision to rescind Mr. Russell’s nomination was made after careful consideration,” said Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs. “The Academy takes very seriously the Oscars voting process and anything – no matter how well-intentioned – that may undermine the integrity of that process.”
The Board determined that Russell’s actions violated a campaign regulation that unequivocally prohibits telephone lobbying. It states that “contacting Academy members by telephone to promote a film or achievement is expressly forbidden, even if such contact is in the guise of checking to make sure a screener or other mailing was received.”

The members from each of the Academy’s branches vote to determine the nominees in their respective categories – actors nominate actors, film editors nominate film editors, musicians, composers and lyricists vote the nominations for song and score.
During the nominations process, all 456 voting members of the Sound Branch received a reminder list of film titles eligible in the Sound Mixing category in order to vote.
The nominees for Sound Mixing are:

 2017 Independent Spirit Awards Winners

The 32nd annual Film Independent Spirit Awards were held this afternoon in a tent on a beach in Santa Monica. 
Moonlight won 5 awards; the most for a film in the last decade. Although the Spirits are a completely different voting group, my hope for Moonlight winning Best Picture tomorrow night stays alive. 

Best Feature

Best Male Lead
Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea

Best Female Lead
Isabelle Huppert, Elle

Best Supporting Female
Molly Shannon, Other People

Best Supporting Male
Ben Foster, Hell or High Water

Best Director
Barry Jenkins, Moonlight

Best International Film
Toni Erdmann

Best Screenplay

Best First Screenplay
The Witch

Best Cinematography

Best First Feature
The Witch

Best Documentary
O.J.: Made in America

Robert Altman Award (Best Ensemble)

John Cassavetes Award (Best Feature Under $500,000)
Spa Night

Movie Awards Plus Final Oscar Predictions (Updated)

After following the Oscars all year long, you would think that I would have a good idea of how they might go. Nobody really knows as much as might claim they do. The only lock is Viola Davis for Best Supporting Actress. Most presume that La La Land is a sure thing for Best Picture and it probably is, but I am going with a Best Picture/Director Split. Moonlight for Best Picture and Damian Chazelle for Director. I am probably wrong, but I can’t ignore the passion that is behind Moonlight right now.
Here goes nothing:

Update: Made a few changes based on new information and watching the shorts.

Best Picture

Best Director
Damien Chazelle, La La Land

Best Actress
Emma Stone, La La Land

Best Supporting Actress
Viola Davis, Fences

Best Actor
Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea

Best Supporting Actor
Mahershala Ali, Moonlight

Best Documentary Feature
O.J.: Made in America

Best Adapted Screenplay

Best Original Screenplay
Manchester by the Sea, Kenneth Lonergan

Best Foreign Language Film
A Man Called Ove

Best Original Score
La La Land

Best Original Song
“City of Stars,” La La Land

Best Cinematography

Best Production Design
La La Land

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Star Trek Beyond

Best Costume Design

Best Visual Effects
The Jungle Book

Best Sound Editing
Hacksaw Ridge

Best Sound Mixing
La La Land

Best Documentary Short
4.1 Miles

Best Live Action Short

Best Animated Feature

Best Film Editing
Hacksaw Ridge

Best Animated Short

Mark Duplass Writes Open Letter to Academy Praising Moonlight 

This years Oscar narrative was all but sealed until this past weekend. If you are betting money, you should still predict La La Land for Best Picture. It is still the safest bet, but there seems to be a last minute surge for Moonlight. Director Mark Duplass wrote the following letter to the Academy is support of Moonlight. 

“I really want you to see ‘Moonlight.’
“Because it is a bit of a miracle.
“The sad truth is, films like this don’t get made anymore. It is a film about a young black boy from Florida navigating his burgeoning homosexuality while simultaneously trying to overcome the perils of being raised by his drug-addicted single mother. It has no movie stars. It is unabashedly honest and unapologetically runs against the tide of what is commonly considered to be commercial cinema. That’s all to say… it is impossible to get a movie like this made in today’s indie film ecosystem.
“Yet, the film exists. Somehow, it got made.
“Thank God.
“Because this is my favorite film of the last 10 years.
“And, I think it’s fair to say that it’s an important film. Not important in the ‘eat your vegetables and see this important art film even though it’s painful to watch’ way. The film is important because it is actually not a niche film. It is not just for people who like movies that feature marginalized characters who aren’t often featured in leading roles. The film is important because it is a beautiful, sweet, open love letter to the core human values that connect us all. It is important because it reaches beyond its specific characters and tells the story of all of our dreams and collective life experiences. It simultaneously tells a harsh truth and, miraculously, does it with an air of hope. It is the kind of film I have been trying to figure out how to make for my entire career.
“So now I recommend it to people as loudly and as often as I can. And I make it a point to recommend it not just to art film geeks but also to fans of blockbuster cinema, childhood friends from back home, or older couples who don’t like ‘these kinds of films.’ And inevitably they call me a week or two later. Or sometimes the very next day. And we talk about the film. About how it made them feel. About how they connected so deeply with characters who were, more often than not, very different from them.
“And I can’t help but think how a movie like this is helping to create a small but sturdy bridge in our extremely divided times. I think about those of us who are trying to find ways to connect with others we don’t fully understand. And I think that a simple, fun way to pitch in to this effort is to simply sit down and watch this film. And let it change you.
“So, please. Go see ‘Moonlight.’ Because the film is simply fantastic. And because, when you’re done, it feels really good to reach out to others and say to them ‘I really want you to see ‘Moonlight.’”

The publicity team behind La La Land way outmatched Moonlight’s Oscar campaign. Moonlight decided to go more on word of mouth then a full on campaign. With a little more time Moonlight might have won. It’s just too late in the game, or is it?