PwC has been in charge of counting the Oscar ballots for over 80 years. This year, PwC partners Brian Cullinan and Martha Ruiz were responsible for handing the envelopes encasing the winners of each award to the presenters.
The awards night went off without a hitch until the last and most prestigious award of the night, Best Picture.
Mr Cullinan accidentally handed the wrong envelope to presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway, leading to La La Land accidentally being named Best Picture, before the rightful winner, Moonlight, was crowned.
PwC has since issued an apology over the incident.
“We sincerely apologize to Moonlight, La La Land, Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, and Oscar viewers for the error that was made during the award announcement for Best Picture,” the announcement read.
“The presenters had mistakenly been given the wrong category envelope, and when discovered, was immediately corrected. We are currently investigating how this could have happened, and deeply regret that this occurred.”
“We appreciate the grace with which the nominees, the Academy, ABC, and Jimmy Kimmel handled the situation.”
PwC US chairman, Tim Ryan, gave further explanation to USA TODAY.
“At the end of the day, we made a human error,” Mr Ryan said.
“We made a mistake. What happened was, our partner on the left side of the stage, Brian Cullinan, he handed the wrong envelope to Warren Beatty. And then the second we realized that, we notified the appropriate parties and corrected the mistake.”