03-11-2024, 10:27 PM

Al Pacino calls his brief best picture Oscar speech ‘a choice by the producers’

Sunday's Oscars saw no envelope mix-ups, but Al Pacino's announcement that “Oppenheimer” had won best picture confused the audience.

Ten great films were nominated, but only one will win best picture, said the “Godfather” star. I have to go to the envelope for that, and I will. It arrives. And my eyes see ‘Oppenheimer.’ Yes. Yes.”

Pacino's brief declaration seemed to pause some in the Dolby Theatre before the audience applauded and the orchestra started playing as the “Oppenheimer” cast and crew entered the stage.

Pacino stated his presentation followed the telecast's producers' instructions in a Monday statement after the confusing moment.

“There seems to be some controversy about my not mentioning every film by name last night before announcing the best picture award. I just want to be clear it was not my intention to omit them, rather a choice by the producers not to have them said again since they were highlighted individually throughout the ceremony,” he said in a statement. “I was honored to be a part of the evening and chose to follow the way they wished for this award to be presented.”

Pacino added: “I realize being nominated is a huge milestone in one’s life and to not be fully recognized is offensive and hurtful. I say this as someone who profoundly relates with filmmakers, actors and producers so I deeply empathize with those who have been slighted by this oversight, and it’s why I felt it necessary to make this statement.”

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