USA: BEVERLY HILLS: ACADEMY AWARDS PREVIEW OF FASHION

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(6 Mar 1998) English/Nat

Thirty models graced the catwalk on Thursday at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in the U-S in a preview of fashions that might be seen on Oscars night.

The world’s top designers showcased new creations that presenters and nominees at the seventieth Academy Awards can choose to wear on the night.

It’s a collaboration aimed at making the stars look glamorous and giving the designer the ultimate exposure — an worldwide T-V audience of more than a billion potential buyers.

These models are giving a preview of fashions that might be seen at the seventieth Academy Awards about two weeks from now.

On Oscars night, nominees and presenters may borrow these very designs for one night only.

More than twenty of the world’s top designers are represented from Georgio Armani and Bill Flass to Badgley Mischka and Moschino.

The collaboration makes the stars look glamorous and serves as extraordinary publicity for the designers.

For with billions of T-V viewers watching around the world, the Oscars becomes the
world’s biggest fashion show.

In his role as Oscars fashion coordinator over the past decade, Fred Hayman personally selects styles suited to the stars from a range of the world’s top designers.

Hayman feels that opulence and elegance go hand-in-hand on Oscar night.

SOUNDBITE: (English)
“You’re going to see much more glamour, more elaborately and more beautiful, incredible fabrics a lot will be haute couture which means made specially for the occasion by the
couture house whoever they are. There will always be some introduction of new designers that make it very interesting then there are always going to be some faux pas that make it more interesting.”
SUPER CAPTION: Fred Hayman, Oscars Fashion Coordinator

In past years, faux pas have occurred on Oscars night when female stars in particular have chosen extreme hair styles for effect that simply do not work.

Backstage, the famous hair stylist, Frederic Fekkai, is coiffing the models for a preview of the biggest night in Hollywood.

He claims to know the secret to a successful Oscars look.

SOUNDBITE: (English)
“The hair needs to be polished, dressed but not too overdone. Not that it looks like you just came out of the beauty parlor. It is about an attitude again to feel good, to feel sexy, to feel glamorous, this is what it’s all about.”
SUPER CAPTION: Frederic Fekkai, Oscars Hair/Make-up Stylist

This Oscars preview also offered a look at two hundred (m) million U-S dollars worth of jewellery that will also be lent to the stars to wear.

The jewellery was apparently inspired by the five films nominated for best picture.

The opulent collection is being loaned by the House of Harry Winston and the exposure is even more priceless than the jewels.

After Oscars night, many affluent clients have been known to call up and order the necklace worn by a famous star at the Academy.

The status of an actor does not necessarily reflect the value of the jewels they wear on Oscars night.

SOUNDBITE: (English)
“Individual collections, stars will wear anywhere from two hundred and fifty thousand dollars to one star who I can’t tell you who it will be who will be wearing a twenty million dollar piece.”
SUPER CAPTION: Carol Brodie Gelles, Harry Winston Jewellery

Those coordinating the Oscars fashions refuse to say which actor is wearing what specific design.

But one day after the show, some designers could experience brisk sales if the actor sporting their clothes leaves the Oscars with a statue in hand.

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