The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences boasts 3.4 million followers on Twitter, and it left many of them scratching their heads Monday night after posting a since-deleted photo of Oscar predictions that made it appear like the organization was making its own personal picks for Sunday night’s awards ceremony. The photo was titled “My Oscar Predictions” and included picks such as “Parasite” for Best Picture, Sam Mendes for Best Director (“1917”), “Parasite” for Original Screenplay, and “Jojo Rabbit” for Adapted Screenplay. That the Academy’s apparent picks lined up so closely with many Oscar pundits’ predictions led to confusion online over whether or not the Academy had accidentally released the Oscar winners early. After all, anything is possible after the infamous “La La Land”/”Moonlight’ Best Picture gaffe in 2017.
The Academy took down the photo (posted below) and issued a response: “We invited fans on Twitter to make and share your #Oscars predictions. A ton of you already have. A brief issue on Twitter made some of yours look like they came from our account. They didn’t. This error is now resolved. And we’ll reveal our picks on Sunday.”
Earlier in the day, the Academy launched a social media feature on Twitter called “The Oscars Predictions Experience” that allowed any of its 3.4 million followers and more to make their personal predictions for the 92nd Academy Awards. The photo the Academy tweeted was allegedly the overall results from the predictions submitted. The screw up was in presenting fan predictions without context so that it appeared the Academy was releasing its own Oscar predictions instead.
Backlash against the Academy became so widespread on social media that AMPAS re-tweeted writer and “The Call Sheet” podcaster Kris Tapley, who wrote on Twitter, “Everyone chill, it’s a predictions app!”
The host-less 2020 Oscars are set to air this Sunday, February 9 on ABC. “Joker” leads all films this year with 11 nominations, followed by “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” “The Irishman,” and “1917” with 10 nominations each. Voting ends for Academy members today, February 4, and 5pm PT.
We invited fans on Twitter to make and share your #Oscars predictions.
A ton of you already have! 😀
A brief issue on Twitter made some of yours look like they came from our account.😳
They didn’t. This error is now resolved.
And we’ll reveal our picks on Sunday.
— The Academy (@TheAcademy) February 4, 2020