What the Stars Wore to the First Award Show of 2017

This is the year of the new naked dress

Nicole Kidman in Dior.
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Annette Bening and Warren Beatty.
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Ruth Negga in Valentino.
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Octavia Spencer.
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Jim Parsons.
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Joel Edgerton.
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Tom Hanks.
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Kirsten Dunst.
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Casey Affleck.
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Pharrell Williams and Mimi Valdes.
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Amy Adams in Altuzarra.
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Ryan Gosling in Gucci.
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Janelle Monae.
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Natalie Portman in Dior.
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Laura Linney.
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Andrew Garfield in Gucci.
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Mahershala Ali.
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It seems that only a few actors decided to duck out of their St. Barths vacation or ski trip to Aspen, in order to make it to the 28th annual Palm Springs Film Festival Gala last night. But despite the low attendance rate, it was still a good start to the award show season.

Already, red carpet trends have emerged for 2017, as both Ruth Negga and Nicole Kidman opted for evolved versions of the naked dress. Rather than donning the over-the-top sparkling styles that Beyoncé and Rihanna have before them, these two actresses chose a more romantic take on the risqué look. Negga’s Valentino gown was embellished with what seems to be an ethereal forrest, replete with beaded birds and willowing palm fronds. Set upon a sheer grey tulle, this frock felt more polished and covered up than it’s nude predecessors. Kidman, on the other hand, went for a peachy Dior number that wasn’t quite sheer, but that matched her skin tone perfectly. Covered in stars and hearts and tattoo-esque sketches, this frock was a tougher take than the Aussie usually goes for. However, with spaghetti straps and a loose, curled ‘do, the Lion actress pulled it off effortlessly.

Also in Dior was Natalie Portman, who scooped up the Chairman’s Award for her role in Jackie. Her dress was also sheer, but only on the sleeves, as the rest of the flowing black frock did its part to camouflage her growing baby bump. Amy Adams, also an award winner, similarly played it safe in black. Her Altuzarra column gown felt rather casual, with a mixed media print of flowers and vines.

As for the boys? They mostly kept it buttoned up in classic tuxedos and bow ties. Ryan Gosling, the winner of the Vanguard Award, didn’t get that memo; he didn’t even bother wearing a tie with his black Gucci number. Luckily, the La La Land actor’s acceptance speech, which paid homage to Debbie Reynolds, made up for that detail. Andrew Garfield, also in Gucci, wore a navy hue that isn’t quite groundbreaking, but among the sea of basic black suits, it felt refreshing. The best accessory of the night went out to Manchester by the Sea‘s Casey Affleck, who paired a shaggy beard with his shawl lapel tux.

While the Palm Springs Film Festival might not be the most sartorially inspiring way to kick off the award ceremony season, there were at least a few high notes. It also leaves plenty of room for improvement, as we inch ever closer to the Oscars.

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