Made for Each Other: Fashion and the Academy \t\t Awards

Bronwyn Cosgrave, Author . Bloomsbury $32.50 (320p) ISBN 978-1-59691-087-4
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At the first Academy Awards event in 1928, Janet Gaynor had received advance word of her "best actress" award for three silent films the year before. For the ceremony she wore a store-bought Peter Pan–collared dress, but for future events she sought the advice of designer Gilbert Adrian, whom she married. In this entertaining look at the history of Academy Award fashion, Cosgrove, who covered the Oscars for British Vogue and the BBC, demonstrates that the Gaynor-Adrian pairing was the start of many between star designers and actresses—Givenchy and Audrey Hepburn, Edith Head and Grace Kelly, Thea van Runkle and Faye Dunaway, Scaasi and Streisand, Halston and Liza, Bob Mackie and Cher. Earlier screen queens (and their producers and minders) had quickly learned that a drop-dead appearance at the awards ceremony led to invaluable glam photos and inches in print: Carole Lombard, Vivien Leigh, Garbo and especially perfectionist Marlene Dietrich who, after experimenting, turned to Dior. Cosgrave could have simply served up a deep dish of anecdotes, gossip and tales of rivalry, but she has gone several steps further to deliver a carefully researched and footnoted book that belongs in every Hollywood historian's library and is sure to be consulted for a long time to come. 90 b&w photos and illus., 12-page color insert (not seen by PW). (Feb.)

Reviewed on: 12/11/2006
Release date: 00/00/0000
Open Ebook - 320 pages - 978-1-59691-752-1
Hardcover - 308 pages - 978-0-7475-7630-3
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