6:00 p.m.: The official Oscars Red Carpet Pre-show is commencing, and Broken Arrow native Kristin Chenoweth looks lovely as she opens the proceedings. I love the idea of decorating the red carpet with sketches of iconic Hollywood dress designs.
6:01: Kristin and Kelly Rowland both look glamorous in black and white, while co-host and “Good Morning America” anchor Lara Spencer is decked out in a sparkling off-white off-the-shoulder gown. I’m a minute in, and I’m ready to see some COLOR in these dresses!
6:03: How can you not get an uplift seeing Robin Roberts back working the red carpet? Plus, she granted my wish for more color with her flowing, rich deep blue gown.
6:04: Jessica Chastain gushes about meeting Kristin and hopes she hears her sing tonight. KC is set to singing in a big musical finale with Oscar host Seth McFarlane. Best actress nominee Jessica said she went old Hollywood with her gown, a very pale pink. It’s a long copper column with very pale pink beads over, and it looks stunning with her long red hair. So glamorous.
6:05: More mutual admiration – plus, air kisses! – between Lara and “Django Unchained” star Kerry Washington. She’s rocking the color in a long red gown. It’s strapless with a very elaborately beaded white top and a darling little bow at her waist.
6:06: It’s Channing Tatum’s first Oscar night, and he gets to be there with his pregnant wife Jenna Dewan-Tatum. She’s in an elaborate long, black, vaguely floral gown that shows off her bump. Her handsome hubby looks great in a tux – what doesn’t that man look good in, amIright, ladies? – and says he’s thrilled to have their baby joy well documented here tonight. Sweet.
6:10: Amanda Seyfried admits that her Alexander McQueen dress makes her feel that she can’t breathe and her organs are slowly being pushed out of her body. She’s honest. She looks beautiful in her flowing pale, pale lavender gown with the shimmering floral motif and keyhole neckline. She says she also had to wear a corset during “Les Miserables.” Kristin says she wants to see Amanda on Broadway after her two successful movie musicals. Surprised she hasn’t been there already.
6:11: I knew we could count on 9-year-old dynamo Quvenzhané Wallis to bring the color. She’s got a beautiful royal blue gown with a sparkling black overlay. She’s got an adorable puppy-shaped purse, plus her mom and sister with her. Her mom says she gets to stay up late. And Wallis is in the big casting news today: She will be in the new movie version of the musical “Annie,” so we’ll get to hear her sing. I think Lara’s right: QW can do anything.
6:14: Top fashion designers talk about the movie costumes that inspired them – which range from “Cleopatra” to “A Clockwork Orange” (!) – as well as the Hollywood designers and stars that influenced them, too.
6:15: Jennifer Lawrence is wearing a flowing Dior cupcake of a dress. It’s very light pink and sleeveless. She and Kristin are freaking out over their mutual “Dance Moms” fandom, and KC just got bleeped. Apparently, nothing revs her up like bad reality shows.
6:17: Zoe Saldana is talking about playing Nia Simone in an upcoming biopic. She looks glam in a very pale gown with the elaborate floral strapless neckline with the black border along the hemline. It’s a very different shape than some of the other gowns we’ve seen, but there’s definitely a pastels trend on tonight’s red carpet that it’s following.
6:20: Catherine Zeta-Jones looks gorgeous in a golden bodice with a long sheer skirt overlaid in more gold, and her hubby Michael Douglas is wearing a deep blue tux. CZJ is performing tonight on the telecast, but she’s not giving much away, only that it will be a “musical adventure.”
6:21: It’s hard to believe that it’s Daniel Radcliffe’s first Oscars. He looks great in a basic black tux.
6:22: Naomi Watts has gone with a long metallic silver gown with an, um, interesting neckline. It’s got kind of a birdlike profile that’s very distracting as she talks about spending time with the real-life tsunami survivor she portrays in the fact-based drama “The Impossible,” for which she is nominated for the best actress award. Her hubby Liev Schrieber is gone with a crisp white shirt and deep black suit with a skinny black tie.
6:30: Red carpet icon Reese Witherspoon is resplendent in Louis Vuitton, and we’re seeing another trend with the royal blue and black combo in play. It’s a strapless number with the neckline outlined in black and an elegant gather at the back. She’s talking a bit about her acclaimed indie film “Mud.”
6:31: Joseph Gordon-Levitt says he remembers watching the Oscars growing up: “Glitz and glamor, that’s one thing. But movies? Real movies. That’s what I love.” Well said, sir. Along with his tux, he’s wearing socks emblazoned with icicles. I love the pic he tweeted out earlier of Sally Field tying his bow tie.
6:33: Good grief, the actual ceremony hasn’t started yet and we’re already getting our first montage of the night. (If you haven’t followed my live blogs before, you’ll learn I have a low tolerance for montages. After the first two, my patience is pretty much exhausted.)
6:37: Bradley Cooper looks handsome in a tux, and he and KC are reminiscing about her kiss him at the Critics Choice Awards. Now he’s introducing Kristin Chenoweth to his mom, who is his date. His mom is amazed when KC ditches the heels and reveals that Bradley’s petite mother is actually taller than she. Now, Bradley is helping KC back into her shoe: “Every woman in America his having a heart attack right now, including me,” she exclaims! She’s also name-dropping the OKC Thunder now and asking Cooper which team he roots for; the answer, sadly, is the 76ers.
6:40: Lovely couple Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban look great as usual on the red carpet, although Nicole admits their daughters didn’t like her dress as much as some of the other choices but her hubby overruled. It’s a long, fluid sort of black-gold column with thin straps. She’s giving a shoutout to her nominated pal Naomi Watts.
6:41: Charlize Theron looks so great in her white Dior and super-short ‘do. She’s got lots of praise for nominated costume designer Coleen Atwood who made her look so fearsome as the evil queen in “Snow White and the Huntsman.” Not the best film, but Atwood deserves that Oscar.
6:44: Congratulations to the college film students picked for the Oscars Experience that get to be a part of Hollywood’s biggest night. So far tonight, Hollywood is doing a good job of honoring the past, present and future of the movies.
6:49: Kristin says one of her favorite parts of covering the red carpet is interviewing her friends, and she’s got her Broadway buddy Hugh Jackman and his wife Deborra-Lee Furness there and they’re chatting enthusiastically. He’s picking up KC to see if she weighs more or less than an Oscar statuette. He’s decided less. She’s praising his wife for having him well-trained as he lifts up both ladies. “This has been a great way to calm down, seeing you,” Hugh says, kissing KC on the cheek. I think they really are friends, since he actually made contact.
6:52: Kelly has “The Avengers” star Chris Evans there, and he’s also brought his mom as his date. He says he most looking forward to seeing “her face, since she’s so excited.” Awww … so cute. All “The Avengers” actors are presenting together tonight, so that should be fun.
6:53: Robert De Niro is with Robin Roberts, and he’s nominated for his seventh Oscar for “Silver Linings Playbook.” She says it’s the first time in decades that one film has actors nominated in all four acting categories. Pretty impressive – and well-deserved. De Niro is full of praise for his co-star, Bradley Cooper. But I’m banking that De Niro wins and Cooper falls before the juggernaut that is Daniel Day-Lewis.
6:54: Daniel Radcliffe is back, this time with co-host Jess Cagle. He’s talking about his diverse post-Harry Potter roles: He’s just going for what’s interesting to him and thinks he’s lucky that he’s felt passionate about everything he’s worked on. He also says that the weirdest question he’s been asked on the red carpet: what he thinks about the European horse meat scandal. “I don’t know why someone would think I’m an authority on that.” That’s a good question.
7:00: The Oscars are just 30 minutes away!
7:01: Jennifer Aniston says she feels “very princess-y” in her flowing bright red gown with her blond hair flowing over her square, sleeveless neckline. It’s Valentino, and it’s stunning. She’s presenting tonight.
7:02: Jennifer Garner is wearing a long, slim custom-made Gucci column gown in a plum color that looks just amazing with her pale skin and dark hair. A fancy train flows from the shoulder blades down, and she’s wearing a beautiful dress. She says she’s most looking forward to seeing KC sing, and she “can’t even talk about” the prospects of her hubby Ben Affleck winning best picture for “Argo.” She dabs her eyes just mentioning it. KC says she’s rooting for her.
7:03: “The red carpet is now complete,” Robin Roberts says in introducing the black-and-silver Versace-clad Halle Berry. HB says she she told Donatella Versace she wanted to look like a Bond girl at the Oscars. There’s a special tribute to the Bond franchise for its 50th anniversary tonight.
7:04: Speaking of Bond, Adele says her long, sparkling black dress weighs 15 kilos so she expects singing her Oscar-nominated song “Skyfall” on the broadcast will be a challenge. She says her style is just wearing what she likes instead of following trends. That policy is working for her tonight; for the Grammys and her red flowered Grammy dress, not so much.
7:05: George Clooney, looking distinguished in his graying hair and beard, and his lady-love Stacey Keibler look stunning. He jokes he sewed the multitude of sequins on her elaborate silver gown. He also jokes he’s now a trivia question, since only he and Disney are nominated in six different categories.
7:06: We have technical difficulties as Jess interviews Sandra Bullock, who is clad in a long sparkling black dress. Doesn’t stop Sandy from being charming. I don’t think anything does.
7:11: “I’m trying not to jump up and down because I love this girl so much,” KC says as Anne Hathaway arrives in an interestingly shaped pale pink Prada gown with a mostly bare back and tons of Tiffany sparkles around her neck. Her dark hair is growing back nicely from her “Les Miserables” turn that earned her an Oscar nom. She says she’s mostly looking forward to performing with the “Les Mis” cast tonight since it represents the end of her journey for her. As it turns out, Anne also correctly guessed the ongoing Oscar mystery that KC has been running this whole time: It’s Dorothy’s slippers from “The Wizard of Oz.”
7:14: Jamie Foxx has taken his daughter for a date, and I can’t believe he is old enough to have a 19-year-old daughter! He looks young and handsome and fly in his purple suit that matches her dress. They spent the car ride to the Oscars chatting about love and her college life. He’s directing one of Ron Howard’s Project Imagination short film projects, and he’s trying to cast Kelly Rowland in it right now.
7:16: Daniel Day-Lewis, the once and future best actor winner, looks classy as ever. He says that Abraham Lincoln has stayed in his heart: “Once you discover him, I think he absolutely stays with you forever.” Lara Spencer is gushing about his performance, and it’s hard to blame her. He says working with Spielberg was incredible because his generosity made it feel like a true partnership. “His deep love of the subject made it an absolute pleasure,” DDL says.
7:17: Kristin is exiting the red carpet and moving inside. She says she’s got butterflies. Again, she’s performing with host Seth MacFarlane during the show’s finale.
7:22: KC is inside interviewing the producers, and she’s offering them praise and a huge bottle of antacids. They cast her to sing at the finale, so they’re doing OK so far in my opinion.
7:23: The OU-Texas football rivalry makes it to the Oscars as KC and Renee Zellweger meet backstage. Renee looks lovely as usual in the golden Caroline Herrera gown, per usual.
7:24: Jess Cagle is in the broadcast truck. The red carpet show has jumped the shark. Time to move on.
7:25: The statuesque Queen Latifah looks elegant in Badgley Mischka white, which gives the red carpet broadcast one last opportunity for gushing praise and air kisses.
That’s our cue to move along to the live blog of the actual show, coming up after these messages.
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