After far too long in the desert, the stars descended from the heavens to bestow glamour and fabulousness on an exhausted world population that didn’t realize how much they missed those very things. Are we being a bit dramatic about the 93rd Academy Awards? Okay, yes. But can you blame us?
No one knew quite what to expect out of this year’s ceremony, what with the promise of a more intimate ceremony set in Los Angeles’ Union Station, the need for social distancing, and the rather uneven style efforts throughout this locked-down awards season. But to our pleasant surprise, the stars must’ve realized we were all hungry for some glamour and some dazzle, because collectively, they came out in some truly unforgettable looks.
Here are some of the most memorable, some of the most fabulous, and a few that didn’t quite stick the landing, if you know what we mean.
1) Regina King in Louis Vuitton
It’s such a Regina King sort of flex to show up at the Oscars in a year when you’re not nominated (but definitely should have been) in a gown that could quite reasonably be placed on the list of Greatest Oscar Gowns of All Time. The One Night in Miami director kicked off the ceremony by strutting through Union Station, clearly feeling her look and projecting confidence, power, and drop-dead stunning elegance.
2) Carey Mulligan in Valentino Couture
After a string of subdued, neutral gowns during awards season, the Promising Young Woman star and Best Actress nominee stunned and surprised us by stepping out onto the red carpet in a head-turning metallic gold ensemble with a huge skirt and bandeau top. We appreciated the sudden boldness, but the proportions are a little odd.
3) Zendaya in Valentino
Trust Zendaya to make a statement and show up looking like no one else there. If you’re not at the Oscars to pick up a trophy for yourself, it’s a chance to loosen up, have a little fun with the night, and maybe serve a hot look that keeps all eyes on you. We love the light, flowy feel, the gorgeous yellow color, and the beachy waves of her hair. It’s a look for standing in front of a wind machine and of course she worked it to its full effect.
4) Emerald Fennell in Gucci
The Promising Young Woman writer/director charmed everyone with her speech, her adorable personality, and a dress that couldn’t have suited her better. She seems to like these flowy, girly gowns a lot, since she’s been wearing them through awards season, but appropriately, this is the best of the lot.
5) Lakeith Stanfield in Saint Laurent
We’ve been saying for years that male stars need to stop dressing like lawyers and butlers on the red carpet—and start dressing like the artists they are. Several of the history-making male nominees showed up in stunners, but the Judas and the Black Messiah star and Best Supporting Actor nominee took us back to the disco era in this incredibly cool jumpsuit custom made for him.
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