The 2017 Academy Awards looked to belong to La La Land. When Warren Beatty opened the envelope and announced the musical drama had won best picture — after it had already one won five Oscars, including best actress and best director — it seemed like a logical conclusion to the night. But after producer Jordan Horowitz finished his acceptance speech and producer Marc Platt stepped up to the microphone, things on stage got weird. Before Platt’s speech was over, Horowitz and producer Fred Berger found out that Moonlight had won the award instead.
Berger, still taking in what just happened, stepped up to the microphone and thanked his family and director Damien Chazelle before informing the audience and viewers at home that there had been a mix-up. “We lost, by the way, but, you know,” he said. Nobody in the stunned audience knew what was going on, so Horowitz jumped on the microphone to clarify: “You guys, I’m sorry. No. There’s a mistake. Moonlight, you guys won best picture.” He held up the card, and then the bewildered makers of Moonlight moved to the stage.
Warren Beatty then attempted to explain what happened, but the secondhand embarrassment is still too much. Too soon, guys. Too soon.