PricewaterhouseCoopers Keeps Hollywood's Best Kept Secrets for 76 Years and Counting
LOS ANGELES, Feb. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) this year celebrates its 76th year counting the Oscars® ballots on behalf of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences ("The Academy"). Brad Oltmanns and Rick Rosas will continue the tradition leading the balloting process and will be the only two people in the world to know the identity of the Oscar® winners before the 82nd Annual Academy Awards® live telecast on Sunday, March 7, 2010 on ABC at 5 p.m. PT (8 p.m. ET).
"For 76 years, trust and integrity have been the foundation of our relationship with PricewaterhouseCoopers," said Tom Sherak, Academy President. "We look forward to celebrating the outstanding achievements of the motion picture industry with PwC as our balloting partner for many years to come."
During the 76 years, the tabulating process has remained the same and there has never been a single security breach.
For the first time since 1943, the number of Best Picture nominees has been expanded from five to 10. The nominees were chosen and the winner will be selected through the preferential voting system.
"While the voting rules have changed for the Best Picture category, our goals remain the same – to ensure accuracy, objectivity and confidentiality in the balloting process," said Brad Oltmanns, who has led the Academy's balloting process since 2004. To ensure the utmost secrecy and confidentiality, Oltmanns and Rosas lead a tight-lipped group of accountants who work on the project from a top-secret location. "We're proud of our track record and heritage of hand counting every ballot to deliver the utmost level of accuracy and reliability to the Academy."
"Leading the Oscars balloting team is one of the most rewarding assignments of a lifetime," said Rick Rosas, having been in the lead balloting role since 2001. "Our relationship with the Academy is a tremendous source of pride for PwC and epitomizes our long-standing association with Hollywood and the entertainment and media industry."
How it Works
Nomination ballots were mailed to 5,777 voting members of the Academy on December 28, 2009, with votes due by 5 p.m. PT on January 23, 2010. Ten days later, on February 2, the nominees were announced. Final ballots will be mailed today (February 10, 2010); final ballots are due by 5 p.m. PT on March 2, 2010.
All completed ballots are delivered to PricewaterhouseCoopers. The balloting leaders then manually tabulate the responses according to Academy rules. As a precautionary measure, two complete sets of envelopes bearing winners' names are prepared and brought by PricewaterhouseCoopers partners to the ceremony via separate, secret routes. As a second precautionary measure, the PricewaterhouseCoopers balloting leaders also memorize the names of the award winners.
Identities of Oscar recipients are kept confidential until they are announced during the live telecast. During the show, Oltmanns and Rosas remain backstage and hand the envelopes to award presenters just before they walk onstage.
For additional information, visit: www.pwc.com/balloting.
Facts from 76 Years of Oscars® Balloting
- 450,000+: The approximate number of ballots counted by PricewaterhouseCoopers in 76 years on the job.
- 2,550+: The number of winners' envelopes stuffed since the envelope system was introduced in 1941.
- 1,700: The approximate number of "person-hours" it takes the PricewaterhouseCoopers team every year to count and verify the ballots by hand.
- 34: The number of broadcasts PricewaterhouseCoopers' partners have appeared on since 1953 – the year the Oscars were first televised. The partners used to come on stage to hand-deliver the envelopes – hence, "and the envelope please" – but this is now done just offstage. During the 2008 telecast, Rick Rosas and Brad Oltmanns were featured in a short, humorous video clip about the balloting process.
- 24: The number of awards categories to be tabulated for the 82nd Academy Awards at a secret location known only to the members of the small PricewaterhouseCoopers ballot team.
- 7: The number of days it takes to count the ballots for nominations.
- 3: The number of days it takes to count the final ballots.
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SOURCE PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP