Rumor has it that this Sunday at the Academy Awards, Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty will present an award that should be very familiar to them. Dunaway and Beatty will announce the Oscars' Best Picture nominees and winner for the second year in a row after calling out the wrong winner at the 2017 Oscars. But perhaps the Academy believes in second chances.
Ahead of the 2018 Oscars, inside sources told TMZ that the Bonnie and Clyde actors showed up at the Dolby Theatre to rehearse their lines for the Best Picture segment. The actors "shuffled onstage together very quickly" to run through their script twice, reported TMZ.
If the report is true, then that means Dunaway and Beatty will have a shot at redemption following their major gaffe at the 2017 Oscars, when Dunaway and Beatty declared La La Land the Best Picture winner instead of Moonlight. "Presenting is better the second time around," Dunaway reportedly said at the Dolby Theatre rehearsal on Thursday. Beatty then responded, "The winner is Gone with the Wind." It's uncertain whether the Gone with the Wind line is a scripted joke or if Beatty was using the famous film as a filler title, since presenters aren't supposed to know the winners ahead of time. The Academy Award writers are still finalizing their lines, reported TMZ.
The return of Dunaway and Beatty will be welcome news for those who were entertained by the chaotic kerfuffle that capped off last year's Oscars.
In case you forgot, here's a refresher on #EnvelopeGate at the 2017 Oscars: While on stage together to present the Best Picture award, Beatty and Dunaway had the wrong envelope to begin with, the one for Best Actress in a Leading Role. Emma Stone had already accepted this award earlier. So when Beatty pulled out the card and silently read "Emma Stone — La La Land," he looked around and at Dunaway in puzzlement. Dunaway didn't catch the confusion and thought he was joking for a dramatic pause, she recalled to NBC.
So Dunaway, not catching Stone's name at the top of the card, went on to announce the wrong Best Picture winner. For a couple misleading minutes, audiences mistakenly believed La La Land had won. The La La Land producers were already three acceptance speeches deep before they were informed of the mistake and one of them, Jordan Horowitz, announced Moonlight was the real winner. Audiences were then treated to an awkward shuffling in and out of the Moonlight team and La La Land team on stage.
Moonlight director Barry Jenkins took the 2017 Oscars flub in stride and told Variety, “The folks from La La Land were so gracious. I can’t imagine being in their position and having to do that."
It was later discovered that PricewaterhouseCoopers accountants Brian Cullinan and Martha Ruiz were responsible for handing the presenters the wrong envelope. (And if you're wondering what accounting firm PwC has to do with the Oscars at all: for more than 80 years, the company has been in charge of balloting the Academy's votes and holding on to the winner envelopes.)
That said, a possible lack of communication and teamwork between Beatty and Dunaway probably contributed to the botched announcement. The two movie icons reportedly quarreled during the Oscars rehearsal over who got to read the Best Picture winner.
This year's Academy Award nominees in the Best Picture category are: Call Me By Your Name, Darkest Hour, Dunkirk, Get Out, Lady Bird, Phantom Thread, The Post, The Shape of Water, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. On Sunday, we can expect that Dunaway and Beatty will want to redeem themselves from last year's Oscars debacle and be a little more careful when announcing the Best Picture winner.