The Academy Awards Night, the sine qua non of the glittering life, began early Sunday on the 500-feet-long red carpet.
Four-time Oscar nominee Amy Adams, who is nominated for best supporting actress for “The Master,” swanned down the red carpet at 6:30 p.m. East Coast time in a silver-grey strapless tulle gown with a fitted bodice by Oscar de la Renta. Next up in “Man of Steel” this summer, when asked if the dress was comfortable to wear, she replied, “So far it’s been pretty easy.” Ah, the deep musings on the red carpet!
Quvenzhané Wallis lit up the carpet in a long cobalt dress, with another stuffed toy doggie handbag on her arm. “I’ve had this dog since Utah,” she said, referring to the premiere of “Beasts of the Southern Wild” at Sundance in Jan. 2012. The dog looked like a terrier mix. She said the pooch is “renamed for my dog Sam.”
When the interviewer asked if her dress had a designer attached to it, the diminutive actress said “a person made it for me,” before pausing, as though to recall the designer’s name and then she uttered, “Armani Jr.” I can only imagine the designers and executives collectively holding their breath during the nanosecond before she announced their name. When asked about her chances of winning, she said, “Great, but I’m not going to be selfish about it.”
Sally Field was in a Valentino gown, bright red, and long-sleeved. She looked relaxed, like she already knew Anne Hathaway was waltzing away with the best supporting actress trophy. “Because it’s really not about this,” the “Lincoln” actress purred, meaning the awards show. “I have been a part of a movie that I think is a masterpiece … actors who are geniuses of their time,” she said before gliding off.
Jessica Chastain, her auburn hair loose and wavy, very Veronica Lake, wore a form-fitting strapless coppery gown by Armani Prive. “It came down to old Hollywood for me,” Chastain told Kristin Chenoweth about her choice. “It reminded me so much of Happy Birthday, Mr. President,” said the “Zero Dark Thirty” star. “There’s pink beads but underneath there’s copper, like my hair.”
Then Chenoweth took Chastain by the hand and spoke into the camera – in what has got to be an embarrassing moment – and told viewers to send in their votes for the best-dressed actress on the red carpet. No one ever accused the Oscar red carpet of being the classiest event.
“Who are you wearing?” Chenoweth asked Amanda Seyfried. “Alexander McQueen,” replied Seyfried, to which Chenoweith said, “Of course you are.” The dress sounded like torture. “I can’t sit down, and I feel like my organs are being pushed out slowly,” said the “Les Miserables” actress.
Jennifer Lawrence’s exquisite pale jacquard strapless dress was designed by Dior. The actress told Chenoweth she was 5’9” but she was a lot taller with her five-inch heels and towered over Chenoweth who is a foot shorter. Then Chenoweth gushed they had something in common. They both love “Dance Moms” Chenoweth squealed. Lawrence said she was most excited to see Sally Field, “because she’s turned into my favorite person in the entire world. She sends me the funniest e-mails.”
Naomi Watts was gorgeous in an unusual dress which was cut out over one shoulder. The silver, heavily sequined column was by Giorgio Armani. The best actress nominee for “The Impossible” was accompanied by her partner Liev Schreiber.
“A vision in blue,” is how Reese Witherspoon was described on the carpet. Her gown, strapless and flowing, was by Louis Vuitton. “I saw this dress, and I just love the color,” she said. The diamond jewelry was also by Vuitton. “I love to play dress up,” the actress said, adding that her 13-year-old daughter tells her what looks “cool.”
Witherspoon mentioned her upcoming film, “Mud,” co-starring Matthew McConaughey. “I’m so excited,” she said about the film. “It’s about two little boys in Arkansas, my part of the country.”
Let’s give it up for the guys! Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who was enjoying his first year at the Oscars, wore a classic tux and bowtie. “I remember growing up watching the Oscars,” he said. “I love movies. Glitz and glamour is one thing, but real movies is what I loved.” He gushed about just meeting Dustin Hoffman and Jane Fonda, “who meant a lot to me in my life.” Then he showed off his bicycle print socks to red carpet host Kelly Rowland.
“Do you remember meeting me?” Chenoweth asked Bradley Cooper. “We met before, I kissed you on the mouth,” she said. Cooper looked slightly embarrassed and responded, “Yes. We met at the Critics Choice Awards,” and hurriedly introduced her to his mother, Gloria, who was his Oscar date.
“It’s a traffic jam of celebrities,” said Lara Spencer, before stopping Keith Urban and Nicole Kidman, who noted that she was going to introduce “three of my favorite films of the year.” Spencer asked if Kidman had advice for her pal Naomi Watts. “No, she’s very posed and she did a great performance. I think I’m sitting next to her.”
Kidman’s dress, an edgy gown designed by L’Wren Scott, was chosen by her husband, who agreed that the Oscars was the “ultimate date night.”
Charlize Theron wore an elegant Dior Haute Couture. Her hair, a short boyish cut, was very dramatic and looked fabulous. “My family at Dior always look out for me,” said. “I feel like a princess.”
Robert De Niro, who was with his wife Grace Hightower, looked teary-eyed, speaking about how the cast “was connected before, but knowing everyone is getting acknowledged, it’s very nice, to say the least,” he told Robin Roberts.
“Bradley is a very smart, compassionate young man,” added De Niro. “He cares about what he’s doing, and he likes me, and I like people who like me.” De Niro, who usually looks like red carpet duties are more painful than a root canal, is nominated for best supporting actor for “Silver Linings Playbook,” his best role in two decades.
If it’s red, it must be a gown by Valentino, as indeed was Jennifer Aniston’s strapless gown. She pointed to her diamond ring that she said was a gift from her fiancé, without mentioning his name (Justin Theroux).
Jennifer Garner was in an aubergine-colored, strapless chiffon gown by Gucci. A heavy collar of diamonds surrounded her neck. “I save all my fashion for red carpet events,” Garner said, admitting, “I’m a puddle,” about her excitement and nervousness for husband Ben Affleck, whose movie “Argo” has a real shot at winning a best picture Oscar.
“I wear what I like,” said Adele, in a long-sleeved black dress with sequins designed by Burberry, who also designed her Golden Globe outfit. “I’m really excited to sing,” she said, adding that the dress she will sing in weighs 15 kilos. “It’s difficult, but I heard back in the day Streisand wore a 50-pound dress.”
And the Red Carpet Audience Favorite? Lara Spencer announced that Jennifer Lawrence was the favorite on Twitter.