Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Cinema Connections - The Influence of Classic Costume Design on Oscars 2018 Fashion

The Oscars celebrated its 90th birthday this year, and producers did an admirable job at showing the incredible history of Hollywood. The montages they presented before the major awards, such as Best Actor and Actress, were particularly moving. I also loved the inclusion of 1955 Oscar winner Eva Marie Saint as a presenter for Best Costume Design, especially when she launched into a story about my hero Edith Head and another about Alfred Hitchcock (or "Fred," as she called him) taking her to Bergdorf Goodman to shop for her North by Northwest costumes. Rita Moreno also dazzled everyone on stage and off by wearing the same custom-made dress (or at least skirt) that she did in 1962 when she won her Oscar for West Side Story.

Oscar winners Eva Marie Saint and
Rita Moreno (in 1962 and today)

Something else that happens to show some of the history of Hollywood - though few really appreciate this fact - is the fashion itself. As everyone knows, I see what I call Cinema Connections on just about every red carpet, but the Oscars tend to offer the most due to the glamour of the event. This year did not disappoint. Here are just a few examples that reflect the ongoing influence of costume design from the Golden Age of Hollywood on fashion today.

Until next year...

Saoirse Ronan in Calvin Klein
Marilyn Monroe in Travilla for 1953's Gentlemen Prefer Blondes

Laura Dern in Calvin Klein
Jean Harlow in Adrian for 1933's Dinner at Eight

Allison Janney in Reem Acra
Myrna Loy in Dolly Tree for 1934's The Thin Man

Adriana Lima in Georges Hobeika
Gloria Swanson in Ethel Chaffin for 1922's My Husband's Trademark

 The Academy Awards at the Roosevelt Hotel's Blossom Room in 1929

Opening and closing images courtesy of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences
Eva Marie Saint image courtesy of Time
Rita Moreno image courtesy of Variety
Other red carpet images courtesy of Newsweek

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