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Al Pacino insists he was told not to read out Best Picture Oscar nominees

Al Pacino insists he was told not to read out Best Picture Oscar nominees
© Cover Media / © Cover Media

Al Pacino has insisted he was told by Oscars producers not to read out the nominees for Best Picture.

The Heat actor took to the stage at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday to present the last award of the night. Instead of reading out the ten nominees and announcing the winner, he simply opened the envelope and said, "And my eyes see Oppenheimer."

After many criticised the awkward moment on social media, describing it as anticlimactic, Pacino defended the presentation in a statement on Monday night.

"There seems to be some controversy about my not mentioning every film by name last night before announcing the best picture award," the 1993 Best Actor winner said. "I just want to be clear it was not my intention to omit them, rather a choice by the producers not to have them said again since they were highlighted individually throughout the ceremony. I was honoured to be a part of the evening and chose to follow the way they wished for this award to be presented."

He continued, "I realise being nominated is a huge milestone in one's life and to not be fully recognised is offensive and hurtful. I say this as someone who profoundly relates with filmmakers, actors and producers so I deeply empathise with those who have been slighted by this oversight and it's why I felt it necessary to make this statement."

Oscars producer Molly McNearney told Variety earlier in the day that they didn't give the Scarface actor the ten nominees to read out because they had already highlighted them with clip packages throughout the show.

"I apologise if our decision to not have to read through all those nominations put him in a tough spot," she said, before noting that his decision not to use the traditional "And the Oscar goes to..." introduction made the reveal "a little confusing".

To coincide with his Oscars appearance, Pacino announced on Monday that he would be releasing a memoir named Sonny Boy on 8 October.

© Cover Media

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