January 15, 2018 / 2:24 PM / 6 months ago

Color returns to Hollywood's red carpets but Time's Up still strong

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - After making a strong statement in black dresses at the Golden Globes to protest sexual harassment, actresses brought a burst of color back to the red carpet last week but said the message of the Time’s Up campaign will continue throughout Hollywood’s awards season.

FILE PHOTO: Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon (R) react in the photo room at the 23rd Critics' Choice Awards in Santa Monica, California, U.S., January 11/ 2018. REUTERS/Monica Almeida/File Photo

From white gowns on Angelina Jolie and Greta Gerwig to bold tones on Nicole Kidman, Jessica Chastain and Allison Janney, actresses and filmmakers donned a vast palette at the Jan. 11 Critics Choice awards.

“The ‘Wear Black’ specifically was for the Golden Globes but the (Time’s Up) message remains. Enough is enough,” said Rachel Brosnahan, award-winning star of Amazon series “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.”

“This is just the beginning of a much larger conversation that’s being translated into action, black or not,” said Brosnahan, who was dressed in a pale pink shimmering Zuhair Murad dress.

With glamorous stars drawing millions of spectators, red carpets have become the fashion world’s most coveted runway.

FILE PHOTO: Loung Ung and Anelina Jolie (R) pose on the red carpet at the 23rd Critics' Choice Awards in Santa Monica, California, U.S., January 11, 2018. REUTERS/Monica Almeida/File Photo

The Golden Globes saw throngs of top male and female talent wear black and don pins in solidarity with Time’s Up, launched by more than 300 entertainment figures to address workplace sexual harassment.

The Jan. 7 Golden Globes turnout raised questions about whether black would rule every show through the awards season, which culminates in the Oscars ceremony on March 4.

“The unity on the night was absolutely vital, but definitely going forward, we would want any woman to wear what she feels great in,” said InStyle editor-in-chief Laura Brown.

At the Critics Choice Awards, a handful of actresses stuck with the black dress code including Reese Witherspoon in Prada, Laura Dern in a Balmain jumpsuit and Emilia Clarke in Dolce and Gabbana. All three helped launch Time’s Up.

The scramble for black outfits at the Golden Globes is likely to have left actresses with numerous options for upcoming ceremonies such as the Jan. 21 Screen Actors Guild awards, said Marilyn Heston, founder of publicity firm MHA Media.

For an actress hoping to stand out on the red carpet, a bold color is often the way to win approval from the fashion world.

FILE PHOTO: L to R: Laura Dern, Nicole Kidman, Zoe Kravitz, Reese Witherspoon and Shailene Woodley pose backstage after winning the award for Best Television Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television for "Big Little Lies" at the 75th Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., January 7, 2018. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson/File Photo

Black dresses, however, have always been good for business.

“There’s a lot of women out there who love wearing black dresses. They sell,” Heston said.

“If there’s really beautiful black gowns and cocktail dresses created for some of the other events, I would say a great number of women will go ‘wow, wonderful dresses, can I buy them?’”

The award shows coincide with fashion weeks in New York, Paris, Milan and London, where designers will showcase their autumn/winter 2018 collections.

Whether there will be a flurry of black dresses on the runway remains to be seen, Brown said, but she added designers are conscious of the movement.

“The last thing you want for a designer is to not be themselves, but also designers are acutely aware of the world around them so hopefully there’s a way they can marry their own signatures with being cognizant of where we are,” Brown said.

Additional reporting by Rollo Ross for Reuters TV; Editing by Sandra Maler

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