In an interview with Lester Holt on NBC Nightly News, Dunaway reveals she thought Beatty was joking when he took a pause before showing her the Best Picture winner envelope.
“We took the card out, and he didn’t say anything,” Dunaway, 76, says. “He paused, he looked over me, off stage… and I finally said, ‘You’re impossible!’”
“I thought he was joking,” she continues. “I thought he was stalling. Warren’s like that, he kind of holds the power… but it’s part of his charm. I read the name of the film on the card.”
Damien Chazelle’s La La Land was originally announced as the winner for the Best Picture Oscar in February, but in a shocking twist, it was Barry Jenkins’ powerful coming-of-age story Moonlight that won after Beatty and Dunaway were handed the wrong envelope.
The Bonnie and Clyde actress said she felt “completely stunned.”
“You don’t know what has happened,” she says of the experience. “I [felt] very guilty — I thought I could have done something, surely, why couldn’t I have seen Emma Stone’s name on the card?”
More of Lester Holt’s interview with Dunaway will air Tuesday on The Today Show.