Oscars Accountants Given Security Detail After Receiving Threats
The two PricewaterhouseCoopers accountants who were behind the Oscars mixup on Sunday have been placed under security after their personal information and pictures of their homes were posted online, reports NBC News.
The accountants, Brian Cullinan and Martha Ruiz, were at the awards ceremony to hand out envelopes containing the winning names. Cullinan had handed the wrong envelope to Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway when they came out to present for Best Picture (they got the Best Actress envelope instead).
The fallout continued days after the ceremony, as threats against the two were made on social media, with one person writing "I hope you get fired and get cancer," reports TMZ.
In light of the threats, as well as the sensitive information posted online, PwC has elected to provide security for both Cullinan and Ruiz. TMZ obtained a picture that apparently shows Cullinan's wife shopping with a bodyguard accompanying her.
On Wednesday, Oscars stage manager Gary Natoli told the Wrap that the envelope mixup wasn't the only snafu that happened during the presentation for Best Picture. According to Natoli, the accountants were supposed to have memorized the winners, and when La La Land was erroneously named as Best Picture, they should have acted faster to prevent what would turn out to be more than two minutes of televised confusion. “I still do not understand the delay. Brian should have run out there on his own. Martha should have run out there," said Natoli, adding that he'd told Cullinan the day before the ceremony that, in the case of a wrong announcement, the accountants were expected to "immediately go out and rectify the situation, ideally before the wrong winners get to the mic."
Natoli went on to say that the flub happened as "a confluence of different things. Obviously we know that Brian was taking pictures backstage when he should not have been, and not paying attention. We know they didn’t have the disposition that is necessary for the job. And there was the new design of the envelope, which we had complained about to the Academy a week earlier.” He said that the type on the front of the envelope—designating which category the envelope was for—was too hard to read.
Cullinan and Ruiz will not be working the Oscars again, PwC announced. Sources with the firm have stated, however, that the two will keep their jobs with the company, and that they won't be facing further punishment.
Certainly, consequences were expected after the mixup had occurred. But threats? Actions that, presumably, would make Cullinan and Ruiz feel concerned for their families? Come on guys, it's just an awards show. I mean, this is the same show that gave an Oscar to Suicide Squad, that "huge swirling vortex of trash." Where's the uproar on that?