After the wrong winner was announced at the Academy Awards in 2017, strict new rules have been put in place to ensure that the mix-up won't happen again. The company who organised the envelopes, PwC, have introduced several new safeguards after PwC partner Brian Cullinan accidentally gave Best Picture presenters, Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway, the wrong card, leading them to announce the winner as La La Land instead of Moonlight. At this year's ceremony, the company's chairman, Tim Ryan, has said he will be personally involved in making sure the evening goes smoothly.
The wrong winner was announced in 2017
As well as adding a third balloting partner, who will be situated in the control room of the Dolby Theatre and will have a complete set of winners' envelopes that will also be committed to memory as a "safety control". The partners who were previously in charge of the envelopes will be replaced by employees Rick Rosas and Kimberly Bourdon.
Celebrity presenters will ensure they have the right envelopes
There will also be a new procedure in which the celebrity presenter and stage manager will confirm that they've been given the correct envelope; last year's mishap was a result of Warren and Faye being given the Best Actress envelope instead of Best Picture. There will also be a run-through on how to react if any mistakes are made. Speaking about the last measure, Ryan told Associated Press: "Because, as you're well aware, it took a long time to respond last year when there was a mistake that we made. So we're formally practicing the what-ifs," adding: "Our singular focus will be on the show and delivering the correct envelopes." They also confirmed that PwC partners are banned from using phones or social media during the show.
Twitter users were quick to comment on the changes, with one writing: "So... no more selfies by the accountants paid hundreds of thousands to do this, then? What an embarrassment," while another added: "Woooow… Imagine the endless, and I mean endless, preparation and rehearsals leading to the big ceremony. Gotta be among the most tightly controlled ever."