Oscars In Memoriam Snafu: Wrong Photo Used of Producer Who Is Still Alive

Jan Chapman’s photo was accidentally used in place of a former colleague who had died.
Oscars In Memoriam 2017
Oscars In Memoriam 2017

While the envelope rip heard ‘round the world was the Oscars’ most dramatic gaffe Sunday evening, it was not by any means the most heartbreaking one.

During the evening’s In Memoriam segment, in which industry greats who died in the past year are honored, a photo of someone who is very much alive was used. Australian film producer Jan Chapman had to reassure her friends and family that she was not, in fact, dead.

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Chapman’s photo was accidentally used to identify Janet Patterson, an Australian costume designer and four-time Oscar nominee who died in October. Watch the In Memoriam segment below:

In an email statement to Variety, Chapman said, “I was devastated by the use of my image in place of my great friend and long-time collaborator Janet Patterson. I had urged her agency to check any photograph which might be used and understand that they were told that the Academy had it covered. Janet was a great beauty and a four-time Oscar nominee and it is very disappointing that the error was not picked up.”

She added, “I am alive and well and an active producer.”

Both Chapman and Patterson had worked together on Jane Campion’s “The Piano,” all three of whom are pictured below:

Jan Chapman, Janet Patterson & Jane Campion
Jan Chapman, Janet Patterson & Jane CampionBEI/BEI/Shutterstock

Patterson had won a BAFTA award for costume design for “The Piano.” Her four Academy Award nominations for costume design were for “The Piano,” “The Portrait of a Lady,” “Oscar and Lucinda” and “Bright Star.”

The Academy has yet to comment on the error.

Comedian Billy Eichner may have had a presentiment that something like this may happen. Before the In Memoriam segment had aired, he tweeted:


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