The 2011 Oscar ceremony was abysmal; hosted by Anne Hathaway and James Franco, it was one of the most stunningly boring and ill-conceived Academy Awards in recent memory. However, the 2011 Academy Awards red carpet arrivals show, hosted by Robin Roberts and Tim Gunn, was definitely a surprising bright spot in the long, excruciatingly dull evening. The fashion trends that began at the SAG Awards and Golden Globes continued at the 2011 Academy Awards, and actresses wearing a palette of rich hues and neutrals, as well as gowns with embellishment, stole the spotlight on the Oscar red carpet.
Roberts and Gunn did an outstanding job presenting Oscar fashion and interviewing performers and nominees, while giving us a behind the scenes look at the ceremony (too bad the actual Academy Awards wasn’t nearly as interesting as the red carpet preview). There were many well dressed performers at this year’s Oscars; however, some actresses clearly stood out as fashion winners on the Academy Awards red carpet. Here are my picks for top five best dressed stars at the 2011 Oscars.
2011 Oscars: Best Dressed Actresses
Mila Kunis, my first pick for best dressed actress at the 2011 Oscars and one of the first to arrive on the Academy Awards red carpet, was delightful in her exquisite, pale lavender Elie Saab gown. The delicate, ethereal look of her gown was like a welcome breath of fresh air after a harsh winter, the beautiful pastel color a harbinger of spring. The stunning dress with its low cut neckline offered enough drama, so I applaud Kunis for keeping things simple with a romantic upswept hairdo and classic jewelry.
Was Gwyneth Paltrow overlooked for a Best Actress Oscar nomination for her work in the country crooner film “Country Strong?” Most critics felt the actress wasn’t even in contention for an Oscar nomination this year and she seemed to take it in stride, focusing on her musical performances at various awards shows. At the 2011 Oscars, Gwyneth Paltrow could not be overlooked as one of the evening’s best dressed actresses. She commanded attention in a metallic neutral colored gown by Calvin Klein that made quite an original statement on the red carpet, and she took a risk by complementing her modern look with stick straight hair. No Oscar nod, no problem: Gwyneth is getting buzz instead for being one of the evening’s fashion winners.
Helen Mirren truly proves time and again that beauty and grace are ageless, and this is why she gets my vote as one of the best dressed actresses at the 2011 Oscars. Mirren was in a class by herself at the 2011 Academy Awards, wearing a gunmetal gown by Vivienne Westwood that harmonized beautifully with her silver hair. A few years ago, sixty something Helen Mirren caused a sensation when she was photographed on vacation wearing a sexy red bikini, and the actress has a gift for dressing in ways that celebrate and enhance her body while remaining elegant and classy on the red carpet.
Halle Berry is another timeless beauty who proves that age is nothing but a number, but she’s let me down a bit recently when it comes to red carpet fashion. At the Golden Globes, Berry was a knockout in a dress that showed off her legs and amazing body, but was it appropriate? Her look at the 2011 Oscars was breathtaking and a lot more sophisticated, and she owned the red carpet in a nude colored Marchesa gown. I’ve always loved Halle Berry with the super short hairstyle she sported at this year’s Academy Awards; in my opinion, it’s her signature look that shows off her stunning bone structure. Berry’s strapless “Mermaid” gown, simple sparkling jewelry and chic hair were flawless at the 2011 Academy Awards, and other actresses should look to Berry for inspiration when dressing for the Oscar red carpet.
2011 Academy Awards: Fashion Winner
When Anne Hathaway was overlooked for a Best Actress nomination for the film “Love and Other Drugs” but chosen to host the Oscar ceremony, I wondered if that would feel awkward for her; sure enough, her co-host James Franco made a playful joke about her Oscar snub. But lovely Hathaway, known as a fashion icon in Hollywood, was unflappable and tried to keep the sinking ship of the Oscars afloat with her beauty, enthusiasm and charm.
Sandra Bullock, Penelope Cruz and Anne Hathaway chose red dresses for their red carpet Oscar moments, continuing a “ladies in red” theme started at the 2011 Golden Globes. In my opinion, Anne Hathaway, styled by Rachel Zoe, was best dressed at the 2011 Oscars in her crimson red Valentino gown.
Natalie Portman, who made all my best dressed actress lists for this season’s award shows, missed the mark at the 2011 Oscars with her dark purple, Rodarte designed dress. There was certainly nothing wrong with her look, and her outfit was classy and tasteful but it was too safe, and not elegant enough for my taste. As 2011 Academy Awards Best Actress winner for “Black Swan,” Portman’s Oscar look will go down in history and it’s unfortunate that her purple gown seemed to blend right into the red carpet. I wish Natalie Portman had chosen dramatic jewelry, upswept hair and a dazzling gown for her Best Actress victory.
What a treat to see Anne Hathaway wearing so many great gowns as she proceeded to co-host the 2011 Academy Awards with James Franco. The evening was a bust, and she was tethered by her dud of a co-host Franco, but Hathaway was game and tried to keep things light with her many outfit changes, a song and a dance and her winning smile.
The close of the 2011 Academy Awards ceremony means it’s a wrap on the 2011 awards season in Hollywood. For more Oscar excitement and awards season fun, don’t forget to tune in to the 2012 Academy Awards!