Brian Cullinan, you had one job. Yes, the PricewaterhouseCoopers accountant who is responsible for the shocking Best Picture disaster at the 2017 Oscars has been identified at last, and you can find out why he messed up right here. Hint: Twitter was involved.
Brian Cullinan is the man who handed Warren Beatty the wrong envelope (via TMZ), thereby singlehandedly destroying the Oscars on Feb. 26. (Just kidding. But it was pretty bad.) Here are five things to know about him.
1. Brian has worked at PWC for over 30 years.
He is a Managing Partner (Southwest), but most importantly, he counts Oscar ballots.
2. He may have been tweeting instead of preparing to hand over the envelope for the Best Picture award.
TMZ points out that Brian tweeted throughout the ceremony, and they obtained a screenshot of a tweet he shared about Emma Stone shortly after she won Best Actress. The timeline is unclear, but if Brian sent the tweet right after her win, then it’s possible he was distracted during the period of time when he should have gotten rid of the spare Best Actress card and prepped for the Best Picture category. Take a look:
3. Brian’s fate is yet unknown.
No one knows whether his job as a ballot counter (or other aspects of his position) will be impacted, according to TMZ, but it’s hard to imagine that the mess-up won’t have an effect.
4. He is one of only two people who get to know the results ahead of time.
Brian and PwC tax partner Martha Ruiz take on the top secret work, leading the count and recount without writing down winners’ names. They memorize the names before stuffing the envelopes by hand. Oh, and there are two sets of cards as a backup, which explains how the wrong one was handed to Warren even as Emma Stone was holding that same card.
5. He kind of looks like Matt Damon.
Host Neil Patrick Harris pointed it out during the 2015 ceremony, and we can’t unsee it.
— LongHairDontCare (@Lioness_Lala) February 29, 2016
HollywoodLifers, do you blame Brian Cullinan for the Best Picture mix-up?