BootLeg Betty

BetteBack March 16, 1994: Tacky Costumes On Oscar Night Deliberate, Really!

Winnipeg Free Press
March 16, 1994

bette-midler-outrageous-oscars-fashion-600

WHEN JANE Fonda introduced Cher as a presenter at the 1986 Academy Awards, she said, “Wait’ll you see what’s gonna come out here.”

Cher (and designer Bob Mackie) didn’t let us down. Looking like Morticia Addams at a black-tie pool party, Cher said, “As you can see, I
did receive my academy booklet on how to dress like a serious actress.”

In 1968 Barbra Streisand tripped going up the stairs and mooned the Oscar audience. Her Scaasi pantsuit was completely see-through.

“We got a nice shot of her tush. Of course, it could have been planned,” says glamor buff John Epperson.

Barbra Streisand
Barbra Streisand

His female alter ego, the fabulous Lypsinka, has worn a replica of Streisand’s Scaasi to various award shows. Her advice? “You might as
well just go all the way tacky and grab as much attention as you can. Then you can be in the Star’s What People are Wearing section.”

In 1982 Bette Midler asked the Oscar night audience, “You didn’t think it was possible to overdress for this event, did you?” In a cleavage-hoisting dress that allowed her “to rise to the occasion,” the Divine Miss M presented the award for best original song, which she
explained was “an original song written especially for the movie, not just some piece of junk the producer found in a piano bench.” Then she brought down the house by referring to one nominated song as “Endless Love, from the endless movie Endless Love.”

In 1968, fashion plate Phyllis Diller showed up in a silver lame dress that she described as “a Brillo pad stretched.” She meant to look a
fright.

But did Kim Basinger in 1990 Her one-shouldered abomination was the sorriest sight of the night. Tart-tongued fashion critic Mr. Blackwell labelled Basinger “a catastrophe in white.”

Whoopi Goldberg’s split-skirt and pants combo last year was just as ghastly. But at least she got the joke.

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