Oscars 2017: Poise Under Pressure — Sheila Roberts comments (Exclusive)

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robertsEtched indelibly in my mind about the Oscars this year is how graciously the presenters and the filmmakers from “La La Land” and “Moonlight” handled the confusion that ensued on stage after the wrong Best Picture was announced. Noteworthy was the leadership of “La La Land” producer Jordan Horowitz who took charge and stepped in to clarify what had gone wrong, even when it meant acknowledging his own loss. It was done with a lot of class, dignity, and poise under pressure.

I thought it spoke volumes about the caliber of people we have in the industry and their ability to roll with a chaotic situation that otherwise could have gone from bad to worse.

Yes, it was awkward and embarrassing. I was sorry to see that winning moment ruined for the cast of “Moonlight” when the award was first announced incorrectly, and I can imagine how it felt for the “La La Land” filmmakers when they realized what had happened. However, what said everything were the photos of Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone on stage smiling with genuine happiness as their “Moonlight” colleagues collected their Oscar and “Moonlight” director Barry Jenkins and Horowitz hugging afterwards in a moment of brotherhood. Instead of focusing on the negative, I thought it was an inspiring lesson about mutual respect and admiration and the ability of artists to come together and truly support one another under extraordinary circumstances. Everyone deserved congratulations on their success in that moment.

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