6:02: Nicole Richie being pregnant, while exciting for her, is totally irrelevant — so we switch over to the TV Guide Channel to see what Lisa Rinna is wearing. This is how we spy Miley Cyrus in a very princessy dress that MIGHT resemble a wedding cake. We need to see more.
For a detailed look at Oscar fashion as it happens, check out the red-carpet slideshow, which is being updated live throughout the preshow.
6:04: The TV Guide camera angles are awful. Either we’re way above them, looking down, or, during an interview with Danny Glover, we get a close-up and intimate view of Joey Fatone’s sideburns and Lisa Rinna’s cheek implants and Seacrest-style frosted tips. Please, let people arrive soon. PLEASE.
6:06: We can’t handle more than two minutes of The Rinna, so we switch back to E! and get a bit more Miley, who tells Seacrest that her dress weighs more than she does. It IS extremely beaded. She also tells Ryan that she wants Angelina Jolie to adopt her, which doesn’t seem to bother her date: her mother. We hate to admit it, but Miley was kind of charming with Ryan. She also told a story about how Billy Ray stepped all over her train at the Globes and thought it was called a “track.” Admit it: Fifteen years ago, did anyone think we’d find Billy Ray Cyrus on TV, much less find him secretly charming?
6:10: Jay Manuel is wearing a white dinner jacket with white polka dots. It is a testament to how crazy Jay usually looks that this seems downright demure. He does give us our first full look at Miley’s dress, and our verdict is that we like it: youthful, pretty, neatly layered, with pretty bling. In all, exactly the kind of thing our 15-year old selves probably would’ve dreamed of wearing, if we weren’t too busy shopping for Pearl Jam CDs.
6:19: We had totally forgotten Hugh Jackman is hosting tonight. He’s rather charming, but alas, we’re stuck watching a taped segment of him in a sweater. Which is fine, but come on, people — we need fashion. Although, wait … I think Hugh Jackman just talked about there being a bathhouse theme to tonight’s Oscars, and Giuliana goes, “With naked men?” We guess Oscar is technically already naked, but this interview suddenly went someplace we weren’t expecting — straight through the looking glass.
6:22: For a second we thought Freida Pinto was wearing black, but it turns out we were just tricked by some dude’s tux-clad shoulder. We still haven’t seen the whole thing, but rest assured, it seems to be blue. Or green. It is a color. Of some kind.
6:28: We suspect everyone we care about is sitting in the limo, reapplying lipstick. Ben Lyons has been yapping for like twenty minutes. Whither celebrities?
6:30: We get a glimpse of Taraji Henson. We agree that we both have crushes on her.
6:31: Our first moment of semi-shame: We collectively don’t recognize Jennifer Grey until they flash her name onscreen. Why on earth is Jennifer Grey at the Oscars? As if to agree with us, E! almost immediately cuts to Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens, being interviewed separately. Zac is wearing his Formal Hair, which involves slicked-back bangs that make him look more like Emile Hirsch than his normal teen-dream self. He and Hudgens separately are cagey about why they’re there; our guess is there’s an embarrassing musical number of some kind halfway through the telecast. Hudgens is wearing a Marchesa gown we didn’t get a great look at, but it’s apparently black and was cocktail-length until Georgina Chapman made it long for her; there were also flowers that may have been made of tulle — or tissue — on the bodice. V said she felt like Audrey Hepburn, but we’re not totally sure she’d have worn a dress adorned with death blossoms.
6:36: Phoebe Cates doesn’t age. Which may be awkward for hubby Kevin Kline, since he has. While they discuss loving Milk, we see a full-length view of Hudgens’ dress, and apparently “making it full-length” equaled “sewing a giant fish-tail train to it.” We are deeply lukewarm. Fortunately, Kline and Cates are amusing us by talking about how they make their kids vote in American Idol for them.
6:38: We think it’s kind of bogus that they’re keeping a bunch of presenters off the red carpet. The idea is clearly to force people to watch the telecast just to see if Nicole Kidman is there somewhere. Cheap ratings stunt, ABC. We also spy the top of Amy Adams’s dress: It’s red, and her hair is in a low chignon, which is a relief because we’re tired of it being down and all gathered together over one shoulder. She is also wearing a very ample necklace.
6:44: While Ryan attempts to chat up the little Slumdog kids, who are adorable — not least because they seem fairly unimpressed by Ryan, language barrier or no — we finally get to see Freida Pinto. And … honey, no. It’s blue, it’s lacy, it’s … kind of old for her. It’s kind of old, period. Why, God, why?
6:48: Melissa Leo is sporting Melanie Griffith-in-Working Girl-hair. Her dress is likewise weirdly dated, and is a color that coordinates with her hair in a sort of of bizarrely dyed-to-match way.
6:50: Freida and Dev Patel talk to Ryan, who of course has to insinuate repeatedly and tiresomely that they’re dating. Dev clearly wants to die. Freida’s dress is Galliano. We still don’t like it. The good news is that her face is amazing. Ryan goes on and on and on about whether or not Dev and Freida are dating, and then tosses it up to Giuliana, who has one question: “I’m dying to know, Ryan, ARE THEY DATING?” Was she listening? THEY ARE NOT. HE IS A FETUS. JEEZ.
6:54: John Legend is wearing a brown tux; perhaps he is sponsored by UPS?
6:55: Robert Pattinson is on the red carpet. Looking like Robert Pattinson. We don’t have much more to say about him that won’t make Twilight fans cry and/or turn stabby. Heidi Klum, as promised, is wearing a red dress that looks like it’s being slowly peeled off her from the neck, which a lot of dudes probably hope is what’s actually happening.
6:56: Slumdog director Danny Boyle is happy to be here. The end. Apparently his daughter saw Dev Patel in Skins and recommended him to Boyle for the role by saying, “You’re looking for a loser …” If Dev Patel has not heard this story before, he might be a bit upset to learn about it now.
6:58: Viola Davis is wearing a stunning gold Reem Acra. This woman is 43 and she looks 35. But E! decides to leap to Heidi Klum on Jay Manuel’s Glamastrator, and holy LORD, she is wearing a lot of gigantic, matchy-matchy jewelry. It’s overwhelming for such a complicated dress.
7:00: Taraji P. Henson continues to be adorable, though we don’t see her rumored date, L.A. Laker Lamar Odom. Her necklace is really cool — heavy and pewter-looking — and the dress is white with lots of tightly layered ruffles. The refreshing part? She totally just lifted her skirt and showed her Spanx. Now we can’t decide which of them we want to win more, her or Viola.
7:02: It’s tough to be Michael Shannon, nominated for his supporting role in Revolutionary Road. It’s been a foregone conclusion since July that Heath Ledger is winning this award (if he doesn’t, we will wear leggings for a day … inside our houses, but still), so he’s probably inwardly rocking the “It’s nice just to be nominated” feeling.
7:03: Amanda Seyfried is ALSO in red; she looks cute.
7:05: Heidi is wearing Roland Mouret; she tells Ryan a story about how she had to sit on one butt cheek all the way over in the limo. “What a butt cheek it is,” Seal says. They’re cute together, even if Heidi is wearing way too much jewelry.
7:09: Amanda Seyfried’s dress might actually be oranger than we thought; she still looks cute.
7:11: Mickey Rourke looks relatively normal. You know, for Mickey Rourke. Nothing is glittery. SJP, on the other hand, is mildly glittery in what is kind of like the grown-up version of Miley Cyrus’s dress. Jay Manuel says, “That is … a lot of dress,” which means that he thinks it’s heinous.
7:13: Ryan talks to Amanda Seyfried; she’s charming as usual. He then ushers in Amy Adams, while we get a look at Anne Hathaway, whose updo is very pretty. We need to see the rest of her dress, though. Amy is wearing a deep-red dress that might be lovely — and no fish tail! — but we’re not sure about the way the skirt comes up and connects to the bodice, and we didn’t get a close enough look.
7:14: Why is Melissa George at the Oscars and what is she wearing? It appears to have a giant tulle cloud attached at the bottom. We’re scared.
7:16: Should Robert Pattison have shaved? Wait. DID Robert Pattison shave? What is up with Robert Pattison’s facial hair? We are of the opinion that he will never again be as adorable as he was as Cedric Diggory.
7:17: Time for SJP, who tells us she’s wearing Dior Haute Couture. Matthew Broderick does not look great, we’re sorry to say. He also looks really bored of hearing about the Sex and the City sequel, as are we all.
7:19: Why is Natalie Portman SO TAN? And if this is a faux tan, why does she have such aggressive tan lines? Her candy-pink dress works on her, though, but unsurprisingly, burnished-to-death Giuliana compliments her on the tan alone.
7:26: While Ryan asks Tomei about the shoestring budget on The Wrestler, she seems to ooze discomfort, and dare we say contempt? Meanwhile, Beyoncé has arrived and is in an elaborate black-and-gold dress with a fish tail. And it’s strapless. Big shocker. NEVER could’ve predicted that, no sir.
7:28: We are upgrading our assessment of Mickey Rourke from “relatively normal” to “pretty sharp, for Mickey Rourke.” He’s wearing a tiny photo of his dead pooch around his neck, which is really kooky and sweet. But crazy. But nice. Meryl Streep pops out of a limo in a gray-brown, off-the-shoulder dress with long sleeves, and with a lovely updo, but that’s all we can see.
7:29: Josh Brolin found out he was nominated by watching CNN. Diane Lane listens patiently in her very simple black sheath, probably wishing she could do something nomination-worthy instead of tripe like Nights in Rodanthe. Hang in there, Diane. Brolin was great in Milk, but again … not going to win unless an accident happens. It’s Ledger’s all the way.
7:31: The dead-person montage is going to be EVEN SADDER this year because Queen Latifah is singing live to it. Jessica Biel arrives while Latifah is interviewed, and her hair is … bad. It’s stringy, half up, maybe falling down … She might be this year’s Cameron Diaz, which is apt, considering their Justin Timberlake connection. Maybe JT gives terrible hair advice.
7:32: Anne Hathaway’s bejeweled white gown, which almost looks gold, actually, is covered in paillettes that give it a nice gleam. But it doesn’t fit her as well as it could. It is so much easier to assess these things when Jay Manuel is not drawing all over them.
7:34: Marion Cotillard has arrived, but we can’t see her dress (that has been the unfortunate pattern so far tonight). Ron Howard tells Ryan Seacrest that they might make the Arrested Development movie, and that they’ve all been asked to stop talking about it in the press. We dearly want that to be true, as we all need a little more GOB. in our lives.
7:35: Hmmm. We just accidentally misidentified Peter Gabriel as Frank Langella. Which would be more offended by that?
7:36: Ryan tells Evan Rachel Wood that he can smell her. We are all creeped out by this. She even shoots him a slight stink-eye for a second.
7:38: Jessica Biel is wearing black, closed-toe pumps with her kind of schlumpy white dress.
7:39: Giuliana literally screams when Brangelina shows up. Angie is wearing an amazing pair of green earrings, but her dress is — of course — black. We can’t wait to see her speed walk past Ryan again.
7:41: Penélope Cruz is also wearing white. SNORE. But the dress itself — while a bit tight at the bodice — is kind of gorgeous. There’s a lot of lovely detail on the elaborate skirt.
7:42: We scream, “OH MY GOD” in unison when Philip Seymour Hoffman shows up. HE IS WEARING A BLACK KNIT CAP. What? Why? How? WTF? He’s NOMINATED. A ski cap CANNOT be for a role. WHY?
7:43: We get our first look at Kate Winslet, and we’re … not sure. It’s black and gray and … let’s just say that we need to see more.
7:44: We’re relieved that Angelina is at least not wearing a sack; her black dress is more fitted than we’d at first thought. Thank goodness.
7:46: We’re finally getting another look at Kate Winslet. Her hair is great. Her dress is interesting. We remain undecided. It might be awesomely experimental, and it might be weird. We need to let that one percolate.
7:51: Oh, Tilda Swinton. Bless you. We react to her the way Giuliana reacted to Brangelina. She’s got a black skirt and a nude blousey top that is kind of deliciously wack — or at least, compared to what everyone else is wearing, it is.
7:52: Kate Winslet pretends to be humbled by her cover of Time. Sam Mendes has run inside ahead of her, which is too bad, because her dress matches his hair.
7:53: Alicia Keys so far looks great. Her dress is sort of pink-purple, and if it’s not secretly a pantsuit, we might be in business. Aha, it’s NOT a pantsuit — there is a long skirt with a serious slit up the side. We feel an odd surge of pride.
7:58: Holy mackerel, Ryan got Brad. Clearly he’s throwing Ryan a bone after the Globes kerfuffle. E! actually cuts into the credits to get the interview, and it lasts about two seconds — Brad makes a generic comment about how it’s nice to be nominated, and politely flees. Then Robert Downey Jr., steps in to wow us all with his clean-shaven, hot face. He looks over at his wife a lot when he talks, as if trying to make sure she feels included in the interview, which is deeply endearing. We love a man who loves his wife. RDJ does cop to the fact that they’re trying to get Mickey Rourke for Iron Man 2, which would be awesome.
8:01: E! coverage ends very quickly, so we switch to ABC’s red carpet just for kicks and there is Tim Gunn with Robin Roberts, who looks amazing in orange (and we MAY have read it’s J.Crew, but we’re not entirely sure) and her growing-back short hair. We miss most of their interview with Kate Winslet, though. Newsflash: She is attractive. Next!
Actually, it looks like ABC is mostly talking to people we’ve already seen, so it might be time to get out all the delivery menus and contemplate how we’re going to stuff our faces during the actual telecast. Thanks for keeping us company yet again!