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UK Theater Pranks 'Moonlight' Audience By Playing 'La La Land' Footage

"[We] did a bit of fumbling to make it look like we made a mistake," theater manager tells Time Out

A movie theater in London decided to prank the audience and played 20 seconds of "La La Land" footage at the start of a "Moonlight" showing in light of the Oscars Best Picture flub last weekend.

According to Time Out, the audience got the joke right away and broke into a huge round of applause.

"It wasn't the actual feature film, but a few seconds from a teaser trailer," Rio Cinema's duty manager told the publication. "Then we shut it down, and did a bit of fumbling to make it look like we made a mistake."

The Rio is a single-screen cinema in Dalston, East London, and has extended its run of "Moonlight" for another week. The film's distributor A24 decided to expand the film to 1,500-plus theaters in the United States as well after the Barry Jenkins drama received three Oscars, including the big win of the night: Best Picture.

Mahershala Ali, Naomie Harris, Janelle Monae, Trevante Rhodes, Ashton Sanders and Alex R. Hibbert star in the film.

On Sunday, "La La Land" was erroneously named Best Picture by Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway. When the three producers were concluding their acceptance speeches, there was a commotion on stage until Jordan Horowitz told audiences that "Moonlight" had actually won Best Picture, and the wrong envelope had been given to the presenters.

"This is not a joke. 'Moonlight' has won best picture," said Horowitz.