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All four of last year’s Oscar-winning actors are expected to join forces to present awards at the upcoming 91st Oscars — a move that would maintain an Oscar tradition and also head off the latest developing controversy surrounding this year’s show.
Gary Oldman and Allison Janney — last year’s best actor for Darkest Hour and best supporting actress for I, Tonya — are expected to team up and present together.
And Frances McDormand and Sam Rockwell — last year’s best actress for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri and best supporting actor for the same film — have been invited to present together.
The Academy on Wednesday confirmed in a tweet: “Last year, Allison Janney, Frances McDormand, Gary Oldman and Sam Rockwell had their names read from an envelope and they took home Oscar gold. This year, they’ll help make more dreams come true. We’re thrilled to announce they’ll be presenters at this year’s show. #Oscars”
The pairings would solve the latest public relations stumble that the Academy has weathered this season.
Traditionally, the Oscar-winning actors from the previous year have appeared on the broadcast to hand out the acting awards to the current season’s new winners. But, initially, when reps for Janney and Rockwell reached out to the Academy, they were told that the two performers would not be part of this year’s ceremony, according to sources. No immediate explanation was offered, beyond the fact that the show’s producers, Donna Gigliotti and Glenn Weiss, were looking to shake things up, although reports began to circulate that the Academy was looking for bigger stars to do the honors.
In a comment Janney posted Sunday on Instagram and subsequently deleted, the actress said, “It looks like they are not going to honor the tradition this year. It breaks my heart.”
As that word spread, though, several leading Academy members voiced their concerns to the organization’s current leadership, saying that if that plan was true, it would trigger a loud backlash.
Now, with the current plan in place, it looks as if all four of last year’s Academy Award winners will be back on this year’s Oscar stage.
Feb. 6, 4:42 p.m. Updated with Academy’s tweet confirming the presenters.
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