Glitz, glamour and suspense - the Academy Awards for 2022 are looking at who acted the best, dressed the best and pulled through for truly meaningful moments and storytelling.
More than that, we often look forward to what the attendees and nominees will be wearing. Zanna Roberts Rassi, E! News fashion correspondent, will be part of the Academy Awards panel again this year - covering the event live from the red carpet.
“Today, the attention is definitely not just on what you’re wearing but why you’re wearing it,” she said in an interview with Bizcommunity. “We’re really interested in why people choose to wear what they choose. There are so many messages hidden in what people wear, or not so hidden, overtly making statements - be it politically, be it activism, be it just about their mood at the moment.”
In preparation for the Awards this weekend, we look at the message and importance behind fashion on the red carpet.
For the last 15 years, Rassi has been working in fashion and building relationships that bring her to the forefront of knowing what’s real and what’s not. In speaking with her, it became clear that fashion wasn’t just about knowing what you’re wearing, but understanding the person behind the clothing.
“There are so many interesting stories to be told and I love telling them,” she said. “The idea that [fashion] is superfluous is nonsense. It’s definitely a bigger message and a statement being made on all of these carpets.”
That’s why, for Rassi, these discussions are imperative. Speaking straight to the people who are telling their stories through fashion is powerful and something people seem to be very interested in.
Traditionally, the Academy Awards have brought forward big names with big statements. Zendaya, Lady Gaga, Zoe Kravitz will all be representing - and they are sure not to disappoint.
Rassi mentioned that she is excited, in particular, to see some newcomers. “Emilia Jones is killing it on the fashion stage, she is doing everything absolutely right, wearing all the big labels - people are throwing dresses at her,” she said. “So what she chooses to wear will be interesting.”
Beyond this, Rassi is looking forward to seeing what the men pull off at the occasion.
“The spotlight has been shifting a little bit onto the guys,” she said. “There is so much room for opportunity for showcasing unique looks. You’ve got Andrew Garfield - he is just a risk taker and someone whose fashion I’m very excited about. Same with Kodi Smit-McPhee, incredible sense of style, really goes for it. We can’t wait to see what he wears as well - he’s got a great new stylist.”
Men are making it exciting to watch the carpet as we see the shift happen from dresses to creative men’s styles.
As we look forward to the annual Academy Awards, it’s thrilling to see what the people we watch on screen don on the red carpet. Beyond the winners and the storytelling through film, looking through the lens of how people present themselves can tell a lot about who they are.
“For me, it’s always been about the non-verbal communication of fashion and beauty as well,” said Rassi. “The messages that we send with fashion, beauty and styling are so great, so rich and so enlightening to learn about a person through this.”
The Oscars Live from the E! Red Carpet airs live on Sunday 27 March at 11pm CAT on E! (DStv Channel 124) and will repeat on Monday 28 March at 8pm CAT on E! (DStv Channel 124).