Fashion at the Venice Film Festival

by Sarah McLaughlin '23
Editor-in-Chief


Arts & Entertainment


Fashion at the Venice Film Festival

Hollywood Stars Stun in Elegant Ensembles

Kate Picone ’22

The 78th Annual Venice Film Festival kicked off on Sept. 1. A plethora of famous actors, directors, and producers were in attendance. Whether they were simply proud to share their work with their peers and other attendees, or hoping to win a prestigious award, they aimed to impress—and were certainly dressed to do so. While the movies and series being screened and showcased were certainly the focal point of the gathering, the fashion of its attendees was a very close second.

The pressure was on for everyone to look their best—after all, no one wants to be on the worst-dressed list. However, the most notably-dressed stars were actresses Jessica Chastain and Zendaya. These two beautiful women stood out among their friends and colleagues because of their stunning and unique choices on the red carpet.

At the premiere of her new HBO series Scenes From a Marriage, Chastain wore a strapless, red crystal-covered gown designed specifically for her by Atelier Versace. The dress featured a haphazardly-striped pattern with small sheer sections in between the stripes. Every red crystal on the dress was hand-embroidered and apparently took Versace over 800 hours to finish. All the hard work that the designer put into Chastain’s dress certainly paid off. It has been one of the most reported-on dresses among the many worn at the festival. 

To complement her stunning dress, the star stepped out in sparkling red platform heels and adorned her neck with a diamond necklace from the Chopard Haute Joaillerie Collection. Since her dress was a statement in itself, the simplicity of her accessories added an air of elegance to her appearance. Chastain also kept her makeup and hair simple with a subtle smokey eye, a red lip, and her hair worn straight and down her back. 

All eyes were also on rising star Zendaya. The young actress walked the red carpet at the premiere of her new movie, Dune. She wore a nude-colored Balmain dress with an exquisite bodice and an elegant drape. 

Although the bodice Zendaya wore was shown in Balmain’s Fall 2020 Fashion Week Paris show, the starlet’s garment was tailored specifically to her. The designers had to make a cast of her torso and, from there, build the bodice using wood and leather. 

The time and effort that went into crafting Zendaya’s stunning dress was apparent in details such as the draping technique used. This design gave the dress the appearance of being soft and wet. The skirt consisted of fabric that draped around the hip and then fell straight. A nearly waist-level slit completed the elegant look. 

Like Chastain, Zendaya perfectly paired her shoes with her dress. She stepped out on the red carpet in a pair of caramel Louboutin pumps that nicely matched the color of her dress. She continued the watery motif established in her gown by wearing her hair slicked down in soft, beachy waves. To top off her daring look, the starlet wore a 93-carat Bulgari emerald necklace in the shape of a snake wrapped around her neck.

The festival was evidently a success for these women in both a professional and fashionable way. Their red carpet appearances in show-stopping looks not only gave them the opportunity to promote their on-screen performances, but also to showcase their personal style. 

Although the Venice Film Festival and its red carpet events came to an end on Sept.11, rest assured fans of fashion and film will soon see Chastain, Zendaya, and other stars on the red carpet again, dressed to impress.


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