While award season is always an exciting time to celebrate artists and their crafts, we’d be wrong not to recognize that the red carpet is not just a stage. It’s a moneymaker—a big one. So much so that, in fact, an actress can earn up to $250,000 per night if she decides to wear a certain dress. That’s according to Business of Fashion which took a closer look at who really profits from these annual celebrations.
According to BoF’s investigation, brands, stylists, and actresses each play a role in ensuring that the perfect outfit lands on the red carpet of any given award show. And in many cases, the right partnership can yield a very steep payout for everyone involved. “Several industry sources revealed that for a major red carpet event like the Oscars or the Golden Globes, a designer may pay a top celebrity stylist between $25,000 and $50,000, plus a 20 percent agency fee and hotel and airfare expenses, to ensure that the dress winds up on the right bronzed and toned back,” says the report. “The celebrity may net anywhere from $150,000 to $250,000.”
Of course, the designer of the chosen dress doesn’t walk away empty-handed either. The fashion house can earn a one-of-a-kind celebrity endorsement—should that celebrity go on to, say, win a Best Actress award, the brand’s also secured a moment in Hollywood history.
While it’s a bit different thinking of the best dressed list knowing there’s a business deal attached to it, that’s not to say that most of the outfits we see on the red carpet aren’t authentic style choices. “Obviously the brand needs to be a good fit,” says one source to BoF about styling, but considering the six-figure opportunity for the actress willing to comply, “sometimes the money does talk.”