These are the only two people in Hollywood who know the Oscar winners in advance
Martha and Brian are very important people (Pictures: Getty)

The truth behind what the bleeding hell happened with the Best Picture Oscars announcement lies with two people, and two alone.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by ddp USA/REX/Shutterstock (8436379gh) Emma Stone accepts the Oscar for Best Actress from Leonardo DiCaprio for her role in 'La La Land' 89th Annual Academy Awards, Show, Los Angeles, USA - 26 Feb 2017Was epic Oscars 2017 blunder down to Leonardo DiCaprio?

The contents of the envelope given to Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway to read out was evidently wrong, but nobody seems to know why it was La La Land that got announced as winner rather than Moonlight.

This makes us wonder who, if anyone, is responsible for safeguarding the information in all the winner envelopes at the Academy Awards.

Surely they’d know what’s what at any given time?

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Martha and Brian get the responsibility of carrying briefcases down the red carpet (Picture: Getty)

In actual fact there are only two people who know the contents of the envelopes, and these are the official vote-counters, Martha Ruiz and Brian Cullinan.

They work as accountants for LA auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers, but Martha has a history of working with the Academy’s ‘team’, whatever that means.

HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Actor Sofia Carson attends the 89th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood & Highland Center on February 26, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Ben Peterson Remote/Getty Images)
Everyone’s a model at the Oscars (Picture: Ben Peterson Remote/Getty Images)

It might not be a glamorous job, counting ballots, but these two get the honour of walking down the red carpet with big mysterious briefcases (both holding full sets of envelopes for every award).

This attention is the least they deserve considering they both memorise every single winner for maximum safety.

Speaking about how securely the winners are locked down, Brian told Market Watch: ‘When we close the envelopes, that’s the only place that the winner is written down.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by ddp USA/REX/Shutterstock (8436379gh) Emma Stone accepts the Oscar for Best Actress from Leonardo DiCaprio for her role in 'La La Land' 89th Annual Academy Awards, Show, Los Angeles, USA - 26 Feb 2017
Emma Stone got the correct award (Picture: REX/Shutterstock)

‘We make sure that we memorise them all. We don’t have a piece of paper or anything with us that indicates who the winners are, for security reasons. If you were to lose that or drop that or somehow misplace it, that wouldn’t be good.’

One of the things the academy does is ensure that we get a showcard for each nominee,’ Martha added. ‘Once we get to the end of the week and we know the winners, it will be Brian and me that put the winning cards in the envelopes and seal them up.’

89th Academy Awards - Oscars Awards Show - Hollywood, California, U.S. - 26/02/17 - Jordan Horowitz of "La La Land" (L) holds the card announcing "Moonlight" as the winner of the Best Picture Oscar as presenter Warren Beatty (C) and show host Jimmy Kimmel stand behind. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
Warren seemed bemused by the mistake (Picture: Reuters/Lucy Nicholson)

On their competence and eligibility, Brian added: ‘This is my fourth year. In 83 years that we’ve been doing this, I’m the 13th partner and Martha is the 14th. So we haven’t had that many people have this role in 83 years.

‘And this is the 89th Academy Awards, so you can see PwC has been doing this almost since the beginning.’

So what are they doing throughout the ceremony?

‘We stand on opposite sides of the stage, right off-screen, for the entire evening, and we each hand the respective envelope to the presenter,’ Brian explained.

89th Academy Awards - Oscars Awards Show - Hollywood, California, U.S. - 26/02/17 - Writer and Director Barry Jenkins of "Moonlight" holds up the Best Picture Oscar in front of Oscars host Jimmy Kimmel (Rear) REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
The gong eventually found its way to its master Barry Jenkins (Picture: Reuters/Lucy Nicholson)

‘It doesn’t sound very complicated, but you have to make sure you’re giving the presenter the right envelope.’

Right.

Are they going to own up now, or is it Leonardo DiCaprio’s fault that the wrong film was announced as Best Picture?

Could it be that both the Best Actress cards with Emma Stone’s name on were given out by accident? The truth will out…

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