Glenn Weiss Says There Was No Proposal Backup Plan If He Didn't Win That Emmy Award

Luckily, the moment played out without a hitch

Updated 09/18/18

Jeff Kravitz

The Emmy Awards 2018 was filled with all the usual excitement of seeing who wins the gold and fawning over the stunning dresses on the red carpet, but there was one moment that totally stole the show. When producer and director Glenn Weiss got up on stage to accept the award for Outstanding Directing for a Variety Special for this year's Academy Awards, he turned his acceptance speech into a wedding proposal, asking his girlfriend Jan Svendsen to marry him.

The visibly shocked celebrity audience and those of us watching at home clearly had no idea Weiss was about to pop the question—and neither did the new bride, who appeared to be truly surprised by the onstage proposal.

"I'm used to the camera cutting to me when he wins, because they usually do a cutaway. So I was thinking, 'This is my moment,' my three seconds or whatever. But that was unbelievable," Sevendsen told Entertainment Tonight after the show. "I don't really remember. I have to look at the tape, because I don't even know what I did."

"Oh, that's so perfect!" Weiss proudly said the big moment. "I'll tell you what: What blew my mind here was the reaction, the room reaction. Honest to God, when I thought of doing this—and in my head, I'm thinking, 'They're going to play me out. No one's going to want me to be doing this.'" Excuse us, but this was all we ever wanted, Weiss!

The director continued, "And then I couldn't even finish what I had planned, because everyone was on their feet, yelling and screaming, which was great! I'm so happy it went that way."

In the moment though, Svendsen says she wasn't even aware of the crowd's cheers. "I didn't see any of that!" she said. "I didn't realize that people were standing and clapping. I literally just saw you. I'm walking to you. I don't even know what anybody else was doing."

And you can rest assured that the proposal wasn't done on a whim. The director explained that he had been planning the surprise for weeks, perfecting his words to fit the show's timing exactly. "I kept running it in my head and timing it with a watch, because I don't want to be played off during the biggest moment of our lives," he said. "So I keep trimming and trimming and taking stuff out, and I'm going, 'God, please don't play me off.' And as the night's going, I'm watching other people speak, the prompter, [thinking] OK, how much are they enforcing? What are they not? I'm kind of getting my head there. I've got to cut it. I still cut some stuff out. I don't even know what made it and what didn't."

But what if Weiss didn't win that Emmy? "There was no plan B; our life is a plan A!" he said. "And whatever happens is where it happened. So it happened to happen on the stage. It could've happened somewhere else. You never know!"

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