Whoopi Goldberg’s omission from an Oscar montage – perceived by her and others to be a slight that left the View host in tears – was “an absolute oversight,” the award show’s producer tells PEOPLE.
“No harm was intended, and I feel very, very badly that she was left out,” Gil Cates said Tuesday. “I’m going to call her and tell her that.”
Although described as a montage of hosts, the piece shown at Sunday night’s telecast on ABC was actually “supposed to be a montage of 80 exciting moments of the Academy Awards” culled from hundreds of hours of footage, says Cates. “Basically, that was not a montage about hosts.”
He noted that former host Steve Martin also wasn’t in the montage.
Still, Cates said, “It was an absolute oversight” to leave out Goldberg, an Oscar winner and nominee who had hosted telecasts that Cates himself produced.
“I asked her to be on the show. She did it twice,” he said. “She is a formidable talent.”