Auditors in Oscar Awards
By Taha Kazmi (Ireland)
I have been fascinated with PakistanACCA.com and its glad to see that Pakistani accountancy and audit community is now becoming more and more professional. I studied in Pakistan and in our times many consider accountancy, accountants and auditors, a synonym of a boring life. In fact many still think the same. But with media like these and others, I think accountancy could be a glamorous thing
So I decided to share another interesting fact of our industry. It goes without saying that Oscar Awards have been the most prestigious and most glamorous award function on planet but what our many of our friends in industry never know that all Oscar awards are audited – audited by none other than PriceWaterCoopers!
So let me say, “People will never trust Oscar awards without our (auditors) stamps”.
For this year Oscars PwC accountants will be tabulating the ballots for the ceremony on 27 February – a job the firm has undertaken for the last 77 years. An ethical mindset is one of the key qualities sought by recruiters in aspiring accountants and financial managers, and this project perfectly illustrates why.
The accountants have to count the ballots at a secret location. On the day of the ceremony, security measures are tight: two briefcases, each filled with envelopes bearing the Oscar winners’ names, are transported separately to the venue. Balloting leaders Brad Oltmanns and Rick Rosas will be the only two people to know the identities of the winners before they are revealed on the night. As a further security measure, they are required to memorise the names of the award winners. During the show, it is their responsibility to hand each envelope to the presenters.
Over the years, PwC accountants have counted and verified approximately 450,000 ballots (by hand) for the Oscars, a task taking up around 1,700 ‘person-hours’ a year. It takes 7 days to count the ballots for nominations, and 3 days to count the final ballots.
So now, who said that auditing could not be glamorous? The Oscar audit is the most glamorous accounting project ever? It may well be.