You may have received several notifications on your phone last night informing you that “La La Land” had taken the trophy for Oscars‘ coveted Best Picture award. And, if you stopped checking your phone for the night you may have awoke this morning thinking the aforementioned was still the status quo. Hollywood, I think we have a problem.

As most of us know now, Academy Awards Best Picture presenters, Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty, incorrectly announced the winner for 2017 Best Picture as La La Land, when it was in fact “Moonlight.” But now folks on social media are asking how such a confusing and curious mix-up even happened in the first place? And more to the point, was #envelopegate just engineered for ratings or was it a lame attempt to steal Moonlight’s thunder? Sit back, relax and put on your tinfoil hat because scandal and conspiracy theories are abound.


According to Marc Snetiker of Entertainment Weekly Emma Stone said she had her Best Actress card on her person the entire time. “I also was holding my Best Actress in a leading role card that entire time, so whatever story… I don’t meant [sic] to start stuff, but whatever story that was, I had that card,” she reportedly said backstage after the Oscars. An explanation from The Academy could also explain some things. As Lia Beck wrote: “There are two people who knew the winners before they were named, Brian Cullinan and Martha L. Ruiz, from the accounting firm PwC.” Jarett Wieselman of Buzzfeed pointed out on Twitter that Cullinan told MarketWatch before the show: From a security perspective, we double up everything. That’s why there’s two of us. We have two briefcases, that are identical, and we have two entire sets of winning envelopes. Martha carries one of those briefcases, I carry the other. With two sets of awards, no wonder things got a little chaotic. But #envelopegate, as it has now been dubbed, may require a more creative explanation. h/t bustle

The following are some of the most popular conspiracy theories on the subject:

Aaron Edwards @aaronmedwards 9:34 PM 26 Feb 2017: I don’t care what anyone says they stole moonlight’s moment this is a conspiracy tupac is still alive bey’s name was on the grammy card too

Watsky @gwatsky 9:33 PM 26 Feb 2017:
Wtf. I’m not normally a conspiracy guy but in a world where controversy=ratings any chance this was engineered?? Also congrats Moonlight!

Millennium @ckgourdet 10:27 PM 26 Feb 2017:
Conspiracy theory: The wrong envelope was purposely handed to the presenters to take over the headlines instead of Moonlight’s success.

dodger n @ryantawoods 9:57 PM 26 Feb 2017:
conspiracy theory: it was a tie between la la land & moonlight so the academy staged an experiment where they announced one & waited for the other

What do you think? Sound off below!