Oscar gaffe: "In Memoriam" segment pictures wrong woman

The Best Picture announcement was not the only gaffe at Sunday night’s Academy Awards broadcast.  The “In Memoriam” segment featured a photo of the wrong woman.

Four-time Oscar-nominated costume designer Janet Patterson, who died last October, was listed among the film industry luminaries who had passed. However, the photo shown on the screen was of a living producer, Jan Chapman.

Variety reported on the screw-up, quoting Chapman as saying she was “devastated” by the mistake.

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Janet Patterson.

Sandra Marsh & Associates

In an email to Variety, Chapman said she had urged Patterson’s agency to check any photo used, but she was assured that “the Academy had it covered.”

“Janet was a great beauty and four-time Oscar nominee and it is very disappointing that the error was not picked up,” she wrote.

But the problem was apparently not entirely the fault of the Oscar show’s producers.  The image used, of Chapman, is erroneously labeled Janet Patterson in Getty Images (see below).

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Getty Images wrongly labeled its photo of Australian producer Jan Chapman as Janet Patterson, a collaborator on several films. 

Getty Images

And the Academy wasn’t the first to make the mistake. A Youtube video from Wochit Entertainment published last October announcing Patterson’s death used the same Getty photo.

Patterson was a four-time Oscar nominee, for “The Piano,” “The Portrait of a Lady,” “Oscar and Lucinda” and “Bright Star.”

  • David Morgan

    David Morgan is a senior editor at CBSNews.com and cbssundaymorning.com.