On Monday’s edition of his talk show “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” Oscars host Jimmy Kimmel gave his audience an insider’s look at Sunday’s Best Picture envelope mix-up. “As I’m sure you’ve heard, ‘La La Land’ was simultaneously the biggest winner and loser last night,” he noted. “You know it’s a strange night when the word ‘envelope’ is trending on Twitter.”
Kimmel recounted his part in the proceedings. He was sitting next to Matt Damon as the drama unfolded on the stage of the Dolby Theater. The plan had been for him to end the show with one last spat with his fake feud pal. “We’re sitting there, and we notice some commotion going on, and Matt says, ‘I think I heard the stage manager say they got the winner wrong.’ Which is unusual, but you figure the host will go onstage and clear this up. And then I remember, ‘oh, I’m the host.”
Kimmel sprang to his feet and made his way up to the mike. With his history of pulling pranks, he knew that he had to convince viewers that this was the real deal. On Monday, he offered up a play-by-play of the turmoil that unfolded after Warren Beatty opened the envelope with the wrong card inside and handed it to co-presenter Faye Dunaway. “He was confused, so he let her read the winner. In other words, Clyde threw Bonnie under the bus. Which, I have to be honest, is one of the slickest moves I’ve ever seen.”
And Kimmel observed, “Faye Dunaway, she made quite a getaway. She read the wrong name and split. She got the hell out of there.” As he wryly commented Monday, “except for the end, it was a lot of fun.” Here’s hoping the academy gives him a chance for a do-over next year.