The 2020 Emmy Awards are going to look a lot different this year amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but that’s not stopping the stars from getting their glam on!
While there won’t be a traditional red carpet during this year’s awards ceremony, which kicks off Sunday, Sept. 20 at 8 p.m. ET/ 5 p.m. PT on ABC, producers have asked celebrities to come as they are, but still “make an effort,” in a letter sent to nominees over the summer.
“We’re going to make you look fabulous — we’re exploring the cutting edge of technology to allow us to use good cameras and lighting and look forward to working with you to produce your unique ‘on screen’ moments,” host Jimmy Kimmel, along with executive producers Ian Stewart, Reggie Hudlin, Guy Carrington and David Jammy, shared in the letter obtained by Variety. “If you want to be in formal wear, we’d love that, but equally if you’re in the UK and it’s 3am, perhaps you want to be in designer pajamas and record from your bed! We want to work with you to style your moments, but want you to guide us on your levels of comfort – where you want to be, who you want to be with, what you want to wear etc.”
Celebrity stylist Chloe Hartstein, who is dressing Glow star and Emmy nominee Betty Gilpin, told ET that she thinks we are “going to see such a wide range of things” on Sunday.
“I find it quite exciting to be honest. We usually know what to expect, beautiful gowns and tuxedos, but this year we’ll see people thinking out of the box for such a major event,” she shared. “I hope the biggest trend is people taking a stand, be it with their clothes or with their actual voices, and using their platform to motivate people to exercise their civic duty and vote in November and wear a mask! What a wonderful platform we all have to reinforce the concept of democracy — it’s imperative to use it, and maybe be fashionably creative about it.”
“This is such a strange time to navigate how one dresses themselves. We need to escape, we need to dream, so seeing beautiful clothes definitely helps,” she continued. “But I think there is also a side of it where we must remain mindful of what is going on around us, in this country and in the world. Empathy towards those who’ve lost their jobs, who’ve lost loved ones in the past few months. So I think we will be seeing beautiful glamour, but also more paired down, quieter things.”
With that in mind, we’re anticipating a mix of various looks throughout the show, everything from chic pajama-inspired sets and loungewear to semi-formal dresses and tuxedos. “The story the day after the Emmys this year is going to be all about pajamas,” stylist Jill Lincoln told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s not going to be about the pink and red of last year or fishtail [dresses] or any of that.”
Lincoln will be styling Marvelous Ms. Maisel star Rachel Brosnahan for this year’s show with fellow stylist Jordan Johnson. The actress will be wearing a “loungewear-inspired” ensemble, Lincoln teased.
“We know everyone’s going to be wearing loungewear,” Johnson shared. “We knew that coming out of the gates. So it’s not like people are going to see [Rachel] and say, ‘Whoa! Who thought of that?’ But this is a different year, so we can be a little more creative and do something different than we normally would have.”
“The [loungewear approach] feels right for us and for the time,” Johnson added. “But other people will want to go big and pull out all the stops — which we’d love to see because this is a little bit of escapism — but at the same time, you don’t want to be tone-deaf. That’s why we wanted to make sure there was some positive messaging.”
The outlet reports that once the show wraps, Brosnahan’s outfit (along with the ensembles Uzo Aduba, Tracee Ellis Ross and Regina King wear on Sunday) will head to the auction block to raise funds and awareness for Michelle Obama’s voter-registration organization, When We All Vote. According to the LA Times, the auction at Chic-Relief.com — organized in conjunction with philanthropic organization RAD (Red Carpet Advocacy) — will be open for bidding Sept. 23 through Oct. 2. One hundred percent of proceeds from the auction will going to WWAV’s nonpartisan get-out-the-vote effort.
“We won’t speak politics,” said Lincoln, “but obviously this is a very important year on a lot of fronts, and people need to use this time to kind of make a positive impact with their platform.”
Meanwhile, celebs like Schitt’s Creek star Catherine O’Hara still plan to bring their style A-game (in some unique way) Sunday night.
“We are not going as formal as we would with a traditional red carpet,” Andrew Gelwicks, who is styling O’Hara, told the LA Times. “But we are still dressing up and continuing to have fun with the fashion.”
Stylist Michael Fisher (who works with Nicholas Braun, Ramy Youssef, both Emmy nominees) shared similar sentiments with ET, teasing, “I think we are going to see a lot of talent looking like their true selves. Dressed down or in ‘off-duty’ casual looks.”
“There isn’t such a need for high polished red carpet appearances right now. Most are going to be Zooming from home, and I think you will see them as real humans and not so much as Hollywood ‘stars,'” he explained. “I think if the fashion doesn’t feel authentic or genuine, or have some sort of humor to it, it could come off as tone deaf or out of touch.”
“I strongly believe that art and talent should be rewarded and celebrated (especially now), but considering everything going on in the world, I hope there’s some perspective kept,” he added. “It doesn’t seem to be about making ‘fashion statements’ right now, and I think there will be more personality coming through in the options that are chosen.”
The nominees aren’t the only ones who will be dressing a bit differently, however. In a press release sent out by ABC on Friday, Emmy producers unveiled the first look photo of the “dapper hazmat-suited trophy presenter.”
“The producers of the 72nd Emmy Awards are giving you a sneak peek at the trophy presenters who may be visiting some of the winners live during Sunday night’s telecast,” the release stated. “Not only is this a fun and irreverent visual, but it also ensures the health and safety of all of our winners and the presenter by following all of the health and safety protocols — with a twist. The actual hazmat suit was created and designed by costume designer Katja Cahill and executive producer Guy Carrington, who worked with a hazmat manufacturer to create them for the show.”
As we patiently wait to see what, exactly, the stars will show up in Sunday night, watch the video below for highlights from last year’s ceremony.
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