“Forget The Oscar That She Won, Why Is She Wearing THAT?” Why Are We So Obsessed With What Stars Wear?

Posted on May 21, 2013 in Media

By Spandan Ghose Chowdhury:

The red carpet rolls. Stars, as the lenses react, put their feet down from the firmament onto the crimson carpet. As soon as they emerge, all the alarms set by the fans and the media, start jingling. This is the time to disclose all the gossip around the glamour. It is time to study, to rate and to start a commentary on the billion dollar costumes in which they appear. Cameras flash, not once, not twice, but numerous times.

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But what do these lenses capture? — The actor or the star? None! But the array of attires in which the star walks. And there you’ll hardly find the cameras flashing on the suited up male actors or the ‘unattractive supporting actors’ or moviemakers. Nor will you observe their attires’ thread being scrutinized under different magnifying glasses. Like many other years, the crimson carpet was rolled for the Cannes Film Festival this year as well. But sadly, akin to many other film festivals, Cannes has turned out to be more like an outfit exhibition over the years. Good for the fashion designers as they’ve got another carpet to demonstrate their talent by virtue of the celebrity walking on the same.

Recently, the Cannes film festival began and few of our Indian actors got invites to become a part of the festival. And hence their talent gave them another ground to advertise themselves through their beautiful dresses. As the ‘desi lovelies’ arrived, every single lens started scrutinizing what they were wearing and sometimes showed anguish for not shaping their ‘queens’ properly.

Some media channels put these into their breaking news sections; some claim that they are the best when it comes to dissecting every minute detail of the dress. Some say that they will foretell the dress what their favourite stars are going to wear on the day before the event starts — as if they lack other ‘important’ issues to report on. And commentators start commenting on every single specification of the dress starting from the length and breadth, to the colour and the fabric as well. They never stop describing the attire but extend their expertise to show how excellent the star is looking, and also to the fact that makes her/him look unattractive. The experts in this field obviously add supplementary recommendations for improving the ‘style’ or the ‘look’ of these celebrities.

All the commentaries are so detailed that they make me wonder whether any cricket or football commentary is done with such patience and detail. On the contrary, some flag off competition among the stars with respect to the dress that they happen to be sporting. And they end these competitions declaring the winner and further flaunt ‘fair reasons’ in support of the result. Someone was once criticized harshly and her gown was compared to some random ‘old fat lady’s gown’. This weird comparison not only shatters the glory of the star, which has been created through her work and using probably the same media lenses, within an evening for selecting a not-so-good fashion designer to design her evening gown, but on the other hand, it also discriminates against this aforementioned old lady without any reason.

Most of the articles featuring any of the film festivals or award ceremonies including the one at Cannes, published in recent years have a detailed description of their stars’ dresses which is nothing but a secondary purpose of their presence. And the primary purposes for their attendance — the charisma — remain neglected and disregarded in a fragment of a line of a page long article. The writers, the media persons keep on magnifying the flaws and beauty of the outfits that they wear while ignoring the charm of their work and personality. Isn’t it the time to move the lenses from the dresses to the substance that these stars have to offer?

“Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street; fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.” -Coco Chanel

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