Oscars Mistake Casts Unwanted Spotlight on PwC

Mr. Ryan watched in horror as the bizarre scene played out before Hollywood’s biggest stars and tens of millions of people watching around the globe. In a dizzying turn of events, his firm, which normally occupies a back seat at the glamorous event, was suddenly at the center of one of the most sensational stories in Oscars history.

“I knew something was up,” he said in a telephone interview on Monday, zeroing in on the discordant moment when he noticed two of his employees interrupting the best picture acceptance speeches. “It’s not their job to come out on stage.”

As the magnitude of the gaffe set in, Mr. Ryan went into crisis-management mode.

“What was going though my head at the time was, ‘We have to get to the bottom of this, and if we made a mistake, we’ll own up to it,’” Mr. Ryan said. “My philosophy in life…

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