The 2017 Oscars seemed to be destined to go down in history as one of the less memorable editions of the Academy Awards, when in the last few minutes that all changed. A win for “Moonlight” as Best Picture over the favored “La La Land” would have been a shock enough, but the sequence of mistakes that led to “La La Land” being mistakenly announced as the winner — including PwC accountant Brian Cullinan tweeting on the job — and then having its title taken away was something that will go down in the annals of TV history as one of the most unbelievable moments ever. Click through our photo gallery above of the Top 10 awards show bloopers and mix-ups of all time.
When host Jimmy Kimmel took the stage in the midst of the chaos he jokingly blamed the events on fellow comedian Steve Harvey who had announced the wrong winner at the 2016 Miss Universe Pageant. That show was equally embarrassing in comparison to this year’s Oscars since there too a winner was named only to have her title quickly taken away and given to someone else.
The 1964 Oscar ceremony featured a mix-up quite similar to the “Moonlight”/”La La Land” snafu when Sammy Davis Jr. was presenting Best Adapted Score but was given the envelope for Best Original Score. When he found out he’d been given the wrong envelope the quick-witted Davis shot back, “Wait until the N.A.A.C.P. hears about this.” (Watch the video of the Davis blunder.)
It’s strange that in this day and age where live television is at its most sophisticated that the embarrassing “La La Land”/”Moonlight” mix-up happened, but as can be seen in this gallery many times in awards show history there have been times where things did not go as planned. While none of these moments rival the out and out catastrophe of the 2017 Oscars, they do show that live television can always be unpredictable.