oscars 2023

A Champagne Carpet and Other Oscars 101

Photo-Illustration: by The Cut; Photos: Getty Images

Welcome to Oscars red carpet 101, where we’ll be diving into the history of the red carpet, a topic that I had never thought about until the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences unrolled its latest carpet this past week for the 95th annual Oscars and it wasn’t … red. However, the shocking turn of events has less to do with any previous awards shows (no, it’s not about the Slap) and more to do with revamping the aesthetic of the event. Below is everything you need to know about the not-red red carpet.

First things first: What time is the Oscars red carpet?

Sunday, the official red-carpet show Countdown to the Oscars will start airing at 6:30 p.m. ET on ABC. (It will be hosted by Vanessa Hudgens, Lilly Singh, and Ashley Graham.) E! will have its own, starting at 5 p.m. ET (hosted by Laverne Cox). Arrivals start coming in shortly before that, and we will be updating our own coverage. The red carpet is now live, here.

Where can I watch the Oscars red carpet?

ABC is your go-to for everything Oscars this year, and if you’re one of the lucky ones with a cable sign-in, you can also watch on ABC.com or the ABC app. Unable to get ahold of a cable log-in? No need to worry. You can also stream the red carpet on Hulu Live TV, YouTubeTV, AT&T TV, and FuboTV, which often offer free trials if you’re not already a member of those subscription services.

Why is the Oscars red carpet not … red?

For the first time since 1961, the carpet outside of the Oscars is not red. So what color will the carpet be? “Champagne.” Oscars creative consultants Lisa Love and Raúl Àvila chose the color to make the transition from daytime carpet arrivals to an evening event more seamless. The creative duo also decided to cover the carpet with a tent this year to help shield stars from the daytime weather and create more of an evening ambience.

Host Jimmy Kimmel had another theory about the carpet-color change. “People have been asking if there’s going to be any trouble this year. I certainly hope not. 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,” he told Hollywood Reporter at the unveiling of the carpet at Dolby Theatre in Hollywood earlier this week.

Who should I watch for?

The “It” night for movies means almost everyone will be there, but we do have some favorites to be on the lookout for. Nominees include some iconic actors like Everything Everywhere All at Once darlings Michelle Yeoh (who has been pulling looks on the red carpet, including this Armani Privé column dress to the Golden Globes), Ke Huy Quan, and Jamie Lee Curtis, and other legacy actors like Brendan Fraser, Angela Bassett, Cate Blanchett (a.k.a. Lydia Tár), Michelle Williams, and Colin Farrell. Plus, there are a lot of newer nominees who we’re just as excited to see, like Paul Mescal, Stephanie Hsu, Austin Butler, Brian Tyree Henry, Hong Chau, and Ana De Armas.

Presenters include Ariana DeBose, Florence Pugh, Nicole Kidman, Jessica Chastain, Riz Ahmed, Glenn Close, Samuel L. Jackson, Harrison Ford, Salma Hayek Pinault, Sigourney Weaver, Kate Hudson, Antonio Banderas, Andrew Garfield, Melissa McCarthy, Mindy Kaling, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and Pedro Pascal. Oh, and did we mention Rihanna is performing?!?!? Yeah, it’s going to be a great night.

Oscars Red Carpet: What Time Is It and Why Isn’t It Red?