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The Red Carpet at the Oscars: who was the best dressed?

All things sartorial.
Feb 27th 2012, 4:01 AM 10,428 12

“WHO ARE YOU wearing?” Ryan Seacrest – probably the luckiest man in Hollywood – has uttered those words over and over in the past few hours, making the Oscars red carpet as much about the designers as the actresses wearing their creations.

The ladies certainly brought their A-game to Beverly Hills tonight with most of them leaving the usually ubiquitous nude and black gowns at home (even sultry Rooney Mara wore white).

Actually, white was a popular choice, as was the one-shoulder dress and the peplum detail. Angelina Jolie did go for black but then, it’s Anglina Jolie. Plus, there was a split, red lips, lighter hair colour and a cracking smile.

Although there was no one knock out dress, there were some major hits in Gwyneth Paltrow’s structured cape and dress, Octavia Spencer’s elegant and sparkly number and Jessica Chastain’s Alexander McQueen, which gets this author’s vote for the night’s best dressed.

Others, however, looked more Debs disaster (we’re looking at you Stacey Keibler and Penelope Cruz) than old-school glamour.

And then there were the “Marmite” dresses – Emma Stone, Michelle Williams and Viola Davis – which will divide us for days to come.

The red carpet shows during awards season are often more fun than the ceremony itself – unless it’s the less formal (read: boozy) Golden Globes. Moments captured by the voyeuristic backstage cameramen, such as P Diddy’s assistant preening him with a lint brush, gave us an insight into the life of a Hollywood A-lister.

Jessica Chastain brought her proud grandmother Marilyn in an awesomely-sized necklace, teamed with a Marina Rinaldi outfit. Both were delightfully charming with Seacrest and we were then totally rooting for Chastain in the supporting actress category (she lost out to co-star Octavia Spencer in the end).

It was a real family affair, actually, as Mara brought her sister and nominee Jonah Hill’s date was his mother. An unlikely nominee, Hill changed it up a little with a black shirt-bow tie combo and slicked-back hair.

Bridesmaids star and Academy Award nominee Melissa McCarthy brought the first tears of the night while being interviewed with her mother. The actress wore custom Marina Rinaldi, a name that was heard quite a bit on the night.

Trying to steal the show (or make a viral video), Sasha Baron Cohen came in full costume as a walking trailer for his latest offering The Dictator. The comedian wasn’t funny in his interview with Seacrest and his emptying of the contents of his “Kim Jong-il” urn onto the presenter was just a lame advert for his new film. Ryan was rightly unimpressed to be used so – it’s the Oscars dude, have some respect.

After two hours of red carpet coverage, we have so many questions…Did Stacey Keibler look too like an Oscar to look good at the Oscars? Was Emma Stone’s dress too similar to Nicole Kidman’s 2007 Balenciaga to be a real hit? When Ryan Seacrest said the fashion choices were subtle and elegant, did he really mean boring? Who did you miss more, Ryan Gosling or Tilda Swinton?

Have your say on who was best dressed in the poll after the slideshow and leave all your fashion thoughts in the comments section below.

We’ll have more photos of the men later but a tux is a tux is a tux, no?

Who was the best-dressed on the night?

Poll Results:

Gywneth Paltrow (126)
Jessica Chastain (38)
Penelope Cruz (31)
Cameron Diaz (28)
Angelina Jolie (22)
Jennifer Lopez (21)
Milla Jovovich (20)
Emma Stone (18)
Leslie Mann (18)
Maria Menounos (17)
Kelly Osbourne (16)
Tiny Fey (15)
Michelle Williams (15)
Lea Thompson (14)
Meryl Streep (12)
Sherri Shephard (10)
Natalie Portman (9)
Stacy Keibler (9)
Maya Rudolph (9)
Kate Mara (9)
Esperanza Spalding (8)
Jane Seymour (8)
Sarah Hyland (8)
Rooney Mara (8)
Ellie Kemper (7)
Rose Byrne (6)
Octavia Spencer (6)
Melissa McCarthy (5)
Sandra Bullock (5)
Kristen Wiig (4)
Janet McTeer (4)
Nancy O'Dell (2)
Viola Davis (2)
Berenice Bejo (2)
Judy Greer (1)
Missi Pyle (1)
Wendi McLendon-Covey (1)
Virginia Madsen (1)
Anna Faris (1)
Shailene Woodley (1)
Busy Philipps (1)

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Sinead O'Carroll


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