Thursday, 10 January 2013

The Oscars: Iconic Red Carpet

Today the 2013 Oscar nominations were announced. So were the Brit Awards. And yesterday was the BAFTAs. With these ceremonies comes the ritual, speculation, controversy, power and glamour of The Red Carpet.

Of course everybody is talking about Skyfall and Spielberg and Lincoln and Les Miserables, and Naomi Watts. But what many of us are more concerned with is what they will be WEARING for that all important arrival-and-walk. With the date of each ceremony confirmed, camera lenses are being polished at this very minute.

My memory of The Red Carpet to date is a fond one. My mother and I were trudging the streets of West End London after I had been auditioning to attend music college. A heavy bag over my shoulder, and my hair frizzed by drizzle, she was a chaperone to my 17 year-old self. As we continued walking we met a throng of people opposite the Odeon in Leicester Square. It was the premiere of Australia and I pleaded to wait and catch a glimpse of Nicole Kidman in all her real beauty. So we played the waiting game purely by chance, shoulder-to-shoulder with thirsty fans who had waited five hours or more. And there she was. That tall and slender figure. She wore a beautiful sparkling dress; she didn't quite look real. And following her was Hugh Jackman – I expected him to be so much taller! – running along the front of the crowd, pleasing everybody with high fives and that great smile! Fans knew then why they had waited.

I wasn't part of the ceremony that night, or even close enough to see the cut of Kidman's dress in all its glory. But the atmosphere was electric. What makes a perfectly devastatingly gorgeous red carpet look? So MUCH hangs on the seconds it takes for a star to step out of that sleek black car. Get it right and we will fall in love. Get it wrong, and every gossip columnist will mention it every time they mention you.

Here are some iconic moments over the history of film and music award ceremonies.


Elizabeth Hurley, Versace | Four Weddings and Funeral Premiere, 1994
Angelina Jolie, Versace | Oscars, 2012
Jude Law & Robert Downey Junior | Sherlock Holmes Premiere, 2009
Audrey Hepburn, Givenchy | Oscars, 1954
Lady Gaga, Giorgio Armani | Grammys, 2010
Bjork, Marjan Pejoski | Oscars, 2001
Amanda Seyfried & Eddie Redmayne | Les Miserables Premiere, 2012
Florence Welch, Alexander McQueen | Brit Awards, 2012
Marilyn Monroe & Lauren Bacall | How To Marry A Millionaire Premiere, 1953
Uma Thurman, Versace | Cannes Film Festival, 2011
Blake Lively, Marchesa | Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala, 2010
Cher, Bob Mackie | Oscars, 1986

\\\\ What is your favourite red carpet moment of all time?

NOTE: I have not credited the images because each and every one is so prolific




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