Here’s why the 2023 Oscars red carpet isn’t actually red

Here’s why the 2023 Oscars red carpet isn’t actually red

The creative team opted for a champagne-colored carpet, bucking a tradition that dates back to 1961.

For the first time since 1961, the red carpet at the 2023 Oscars isn’t actually, well… red.

A brand new champagne-colored carpet is greeting stars, nominees, and presenters at the 95th Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles tonight. Creative consultants Lisa Love, a longtime Vogue contributor, and Raúl Àvila, a creative director for the Met Gala, cited the disconnect between the elegant black tie dress code and the fact that the event occurs during the mid-afternoon as the reason behind the change.

We turned a day event into night,” Love told Associated Press. “It’s evening, even though it’s still 3:00.”

Thus, the carpet is covered this year, in part to protect attendees and cameras from the weather, but also to help transition the arrivals into an evening event, per AP. Love said they experimented with other darker colors before deciding on champagne. “We chose this beautiful sienna, saffron color that evokes the sunset, because this is the sunset before the golden hour,” she explained.

Hong Chau at the 95th Annual Academy Awards held at Ovation Hollywood on March 12, 2023 in Los Angeles, California

Hong Chau on the champagne carpet at the 2023 Oscars

| Credit: Gilbert Flores/Variety via Getty Images

The creative team wasn’t too concerned about Oscars traditionalists balking at the change, Love revealed. “Somebody’s always got a way to find something wrong with something,” she said. “This is just a lightness and hopefully people like it. It doesn’t mean that it’s always going to be a champagne-colored carpet.”

Jimmy Kimmel, who is hosting the Academy Awards, had another explanation for the carpet color change during the ceremonial rolling out of the carpet earlier this week. “People have been asking, ‘Is there going to be any trouble this year? Is there going to be any violence this year?’ And we certainly hope not,” Kimmel said, joking, “But if there is, I think the decision to go with a champagne carpet rather than a red carpet shows how confident we are that no blood will be shed.”

Everything Everywhere All At Once leads the nominations at tonight’s ceremony with 11 nods, including Best Picture, Best Actress (Michelle Yeoh), Best Supporting Actor (Ke Huy Quan), and Best Supporting Actress (Jamie Lee Curtis and Stephanie Hsu). All Quiet on the Western Front and The Banshees of Inisherin follow closely behind with nine nominations each.

Speaking of Curtis, the first-time nominee had quite the reaction to the carpet color change.

The 95th Academy Awards are airing live tonight at 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET on ABC. Check out the full list of nominees.

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