The Academy Awards–it’s the most hotly anticipated night of the year for movie buffs and celebs alike. For normal folks who are film fanatics, the Oscars are the culmination of a year of outstanding cinema. Movies that make audiences feel deeply inspired are just the tip of the iceberg. This year, the films were spectacular. Many of the Best Picture nominees were based on true stories; a fact which made them that much more powerful and enjoyable. The Academy Awards are about so much more than honoring great films and the filmmakers and actors behind those pictures, though; the Oscars are also about fashion and fairytales; retrospect and romance; dreams realized; and sometimes, dreams reborn. That’s why it’s so sad that Pharrell Williams disgraced the red carpet and everything the Oscars stand for by wearing shorts on what was surely one of the biggest nights of his life.
Why was this fashion choice a disgrace to the red carpet and everything the Academy Awards show represents? Because above all, the Oscars deserve a certain level of respect; a respect that was ignored by Williams. If midscale urban restaurants can demand that people respect the dining atmosphere by refraining from wearing shorts, then Oscars night is certainly a night that demands at least the same level of respect.
Is this way of thinking “old fashioned”? Perhaps; but where is the crime in wanting to honor tradition and protocol one night a year? No one would dream of wearing flip flops to a job interview; donning jeans to meet the Queen of England; appearing on a late-night talk show in pajamas; or showing up at a prom in curlers. It’s about basic respect and dignity for the situation and occasion, but it’s also about meeting expectations and delivering the fairy tale audiences have come to expect. Pharrell Williams disgraced the red carpet at the Academy awards. Why?
If regular audiences want to see shorts, they can step outside in the summertime and watch regular folks go about their business; but that’s not why people tune into the Academy Awards. Regular people tune into the Academy Awards to escape normal life; to see the glitz and glamour; to dream about strolling the red carpet themselves one day; to live in another world where dreams are made and visions are born; to find the traditions expected of Oscar night alive and well; thriving in the California sun. Audiences want to escape their dull, boring lives where people wear shorts; and disappear into a fantasy where formal attire is the norm and can be counted upon.
Is it so much to ask of celebrities that they deliver for non-celebrity audiences the formality and glamour expected on Oscar night? Is it a crime in some way to desire that traditions be honored? If shorts and tattoos are what is desired, anyone can go to their local mechanic’s garage where men are walking around with shorts on, and skip the awards altogether. Despite the fact that the shorts Pharrell Williams wore were “tuxedo” shorts, the casual nature of the shorts superseded the color and style, and that’s why he disgraced the red carpet at the Academy Awards this year. The Oscars are for glamor, not for shorts. Period. By wearing shorts, Pharrell Williams destroyed the allure of the red carpet entirely, and he should apologize for his deeply disrespectful fashion decision.
By: Rebecca Savastio