Youn Yuh-jung and Han Yeri at the Oscars red carpet. (AP-Yonhap)
NEW YORK (AP) -- Red carpet glam was back Sunday at the Oscars with Andra Day and Carey Mulligan shimmering in award-worthy gold and Maria Bakalova among several stars in bright white princess gowns during the pandemic era's first big parade of fashion.
Day dressed all the way up in a sexy look cut to the thigh on one side with a cutout at the waist. It was custom Vera Wang made of actual metal. Mulligan stunned in gold Valentino couture, a midriff look with a tiny metallic top and a huge ball skirt.
With nominees scattered around the world, the red carpet was far less hectic.
"Calm. If people were here they would know how absolutely groundbreaking calm is," said Viola Davis, dressed in a stunning white custom look with intricate cutouts in a snug bodice that fell to a princess skirt.
The designer? "Alexander McQueen, baby," Davis told E!.
Maria Bakalova, the breakout star of "Borat: Subsequent Movie Film,'' also brought princess, also in white, with a bit of subdued sparkle and a plunging neckline that fell to a tulle skirt, thanks to Louis Vuitton. She snagged a pair of stunning chandelier diamond earrings for the evening.
Regina King went for robin's egg blue Louis Vuitton with winged shoulders and silver stripe embellishments.
Riz Ahmed, Leslie Odom Jr. and Daniel Kaluuya, in a Bottega Venetta tux, were among many of the guys who went without ties.
Diane Warren and Odom kicked off the carpet in Los Angeles in the two trend colors: white and gold, Warren in a Valentino tuxedo white with a sequin turtleneck and Odom in a glistening gold double-breasted tux _ gold shirt included from Brioni.
"I've never been dressed by a designer before, "Warren told E!. "How cool is that?" A small Swarovski frog adorned her collar.
Odom walked the carpet with spouse Nicolette Robinson. They recently welcomed a second child.
"I am a lucky, lucky man," he said, while Robinson was grateful for no baby spit up.
Amanda Seyfried chose vibrant red from Armani Prive, her hair in an Old Hollywood side-swept updo. It was among a slew of classic princess cuts, hers a strapless look with a plunging neckline.
Emerald Fennell, the pregnant best director nominee for "Promising Young Woman," smiled bright in a flowing spring green and pink gown. Lately, she's been making up personas to match her outfits. She topped off the look with sparkly lilac eye shadow.
"So tonight I am Susan your pottery teacher who has a business opportunity for you which is absolutely not a pyramid scheme," she said.
This pottery teacher wore Gucci.
The 9-year-old star of "Minari,'' Alan Kim, vamped on the carpet in his black shorts suit with high black socks, including one with horizontal white stripes. He just had a birthday and got the bike he was hoping for.
Glenn Close, nominated for "Hillbilly Elegy," paired a jewel-tone blue embellished caftan from Armani Prive with dark slacks and gloves. And she, like so many others on hand, was back in heels.
"I'm feeling great. My shoes are comfortable. It's not two miles long so that's lovely," she said.
Other stars chose elegant black for the pandemic-era Oscars. Some were in bright oranges and pinks. Nominee LaKeith Stanfield chose a custom black jumpsuit with a belt and wide-lapeled button-down underneath by Saint Laurent.