Secrets of the Red Carpet

February 28, 2011 at 2:00 am 3 comments

By Chad Upton | Editor

The most famous red carpet was rolled out last night for the 83rd Annual Academy Awards. I find the red carpet fascinating, but it has nothing to do with what people are wearing.

While it looks like a random flow of people entering an award ceremony, it’s actually a well choreographed vehicle for publicity — publicity for the event itself and for the people and projects they are involved in.

I walked the red carpet at last year’s Webby Awards, where all of you helped me win a Webby for Broken Secrets. One thing that surprised me was the timing of the red carpet. While it looks like a casual flow of people entering the gala, it’s actually a regulated flow of people selected to pass by the cameras.

Not everyone who attends the event walks the red carpet. Usually, just the guest representing a project will walk the red carpet. Each guest walks at a scheduled time. These times are staggered to maintain an even flow of attendees moving along the press line.

In some cases, the event’s press liaison may provide the press with a list of red carpet attendees so they can decide who they want to interview and produce stories about. If you see someone with an attendee on the red carpet, it is likely their spouse or publicist. A publicist usually walks ahead of their client and decides which media outlets will do the next interviews with the person they represent.

Guests who do not walk the red carpet, escape the press circus by entering through another entrance.

The earliest known reference to “walking a red carpet” is from a play called Agamemnon (458 BC) by Aeschylus. When the hero returns from Troy, his chariot stops at a crimson path for him to walk on. So, like a god, his feet will never touch the earth again.

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Photo: Ian Muttoo (cc)

Sources: Wikipedia, eHow

Entry filed under: Demystified, Entertainment, History and Origins. Tags: , .

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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. David Cain  |  February 28, 2011 at 7:57 am

    I always wondered how some super-famoud people were able to sneak by. No upcoming projects I guess.

  • 2. leendadll  |  March 13, 2011 at 4:48 am

    I enjoyed it when, this year, some male celebrity was on camera being amazed that the Academy red carpet is actually more of a magenta. They apparently do that so the color reads as red on camera.

  • 3. Madelaine  |  September 17, 2012 at 6:37 pm

    It’s really a great and useful piece of information.
    I’m glad that you shared this helpful info with us.
    Please keep us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.


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