If you haven’t already heard, this morning’s New York Times features an article about the ways Oscar producers Bill Condon and Laurence Mark plan to increase viewership for the ratings-challenged telecast, including possibly having some celebrities skip the red carpet.
Of course, this begs the question of how many celebrities would be skipping the red carpet? After all, at every awards show, one or two stars choose not to parade in front of the media only to pop up during the telecast. (Hey, there’s Katie Holmes! Look it’s Tom Cruise!)
But if we’re talking about a lot of celebrities, including Oscar nominees, pretty much everyone thinks this is a terrible idea. But it could have bigger implications than depriving a gossip-hungry public of juicy red-carpet interviews and discussions about what Kate Winslet and Anne Hathaway are wearing.
Variety’s HAL blog explains: No red carpet means no red-carpet photos, thereby shrinking day-after Oscar coverage to the size of, say, the Eukanuba Dog Show. It means even longer and more incomprehensible Oscar speeches, since the winners will be obliged to shoehorn designer-credit inventories (lest they lose their freebie privileges) in their allotted 60 seconds.
Seriously. The day after the Oscars is usually a record traffic day for People’s Web site. Isn’t the media having a tough enough time without being deprived of a perennial traffic generator?
Plus, you don’t think celebs name-check their designers because they want to? Nope. That’s part of the condition for free clothes and jewelry.
So, Oscar producers, before you kill the red carpet, think of the media and fashion designers!