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Every awards season there is a standout performance that wins again and again. This year, there was a clear frontrunner. She can sing, she can act, she can dance and Ariana DeBose’s Oscars 2022 look proves she can dress too.
Ariana DeBose is the breakout star of the year for her role as Anita in Steven Spielberg’s remake of West Side Story. She is nominated for the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for the role and has already won the BAFTA, Golden Globe and SAG award for it, no small feat.
Anita was originally played by Hollywood veteran, Rita Moreno, who took home the Oscar for the role back in 1962. DeBose did an incredible job of honoring Moreno’s interpretation of the role while adding her own fiery take—and she certainly translated that fire to her red carpet look tonight. Moreno joined Ariana for an iconic moment on the red carpet on the Oscars, with the two stars embracing and posing for pictures together.
Ariana DeBose switched things up from a traditional gown and wore a red hot Valentino pantsuit on the Oscars red carpet—a stunning choice for her Oscars debut. The pantsuit features three pieces: a scalloped bra top, crisply pleated wide-leg pants and the most dramatic of all, a flowing red cape hanging off her shoulders. The cape gives the floor-length impact of a gown and adds a feminine detail to the structured suit pant. If you look closely, you’ll see very tall red platform heels peeking out from the hem of her pants.
While DeBose’s outfit was bright, she kept her makeup neutral with a soft smoky eye and natural lip color. Her short, spiked hair added a fun contrast to the look and is a fitting representation of the individuality DeBose brought to her role as Anita. It’s safe to say that fans (which includes the Academy) are loving DeBose’s bold choices on-screen and on the red carpet.
She completed the look with nothing less than diamonds. The West Side Story star wore a dazzling diamond choker draped around her neck—a perfect pairing with the deep scalloped structure of her top. DeBose added simple drop earrings and stacked her wrist with more diamonds which glittered with every flick of her cape’s train.
As DeBose glided down the red carpet, she had a regal presence (her great posture as a dancer also certainly helps). The queen-like movement of her cape sets the scene for DeBose’s newly established reign in Hollywood. The actress has set her own stage for a well-deserved rise in on-screen stardom. And while she’s finally getting noticed by the film industry, DeBose has actually been around for quite some time.
If you keep thinking that Ariana DeBose looks familiar, it’s probably because you’ve seen her before. Prior to her award-winning West Side Story performance, DeBose appeared in Hamilton (on Broadway and Disney+), The Prom, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical and even a season of So You Think You Can Dance. The actress is just getting started so there will be many more Ariana DeBose red carpet moments (and wins!) to look forward to.