Billy Porter Shares Reason Behind His Show-Stopping Red Carpet Look
Wed, April 21, 2021

Billy Porter Shares Reason Behind His Show-Stopping Red Carpet Look

American Broadway theater performer Billy Porter (second left) has been in show business for 30 years and is known as not just an actor and writer but also a red carpet superstar / Photo by: The Huntington via Flickr

 

American Broadway theater performer Billy Porter has been in show business for 30 years and is known as not just an actor and writer but also a red carpet superstar. In Hollywood, he is considered a force to be reckoned with and he has made history when he became the first openly gay black man to win an Emmy for his role in the TV series “Pose.”

 

The Tuxedo Gown

During the 91st Academy Awards in Los Angeles last February, the “Pose” actor also used the platform to make a personal statement. He wore a tuxedo gown by fashion designer Christian Siriano and became this year’s “most viral red carpet moment.” Recently, he shared via American entertainment platform Refinery29 the reason behind the red-carpet look.

Porter said that at that time, he had no intention of going but was asked to host the red carpet. That’s when he went to Siriano as he viewed him as a designer who understands that every person wears clothes, regardless of the person’s size. “It’s in his DNA to design for everyone,” Porter added. The performer shares that in his mind, he wanted a “gender-bending-fluid” look but he already received a lot of no’s from other designers. He was determined to wear a ball gown and believed that the only person who can do it was Siriano.

 

The Church As His First Introduction to High Fashion

Porter shared his fashion philosophy, which is to wear whatever you want. In an interview with New York Fashion Week creator Fern Mallis, Porter said that his first exposure to high fashion was in a black Pentecostal church in Pennsylvania. Going to church as a kid, he considered every week to be a fashion show and the church’s aisle was his runway. Choosing the seat near the pulpit, it meant a longer time to walk the aisle and more time to show off his “Sunday’s best.” He said that it was like sashaying down the center aisle and saying, “How are you doing, saints?” The experience was his early fashion education.

Showstopper Realness in the Oscar

When he arrived at the Academy Awards wearing the tuxedo-ball gown combo, it became one of the most talked-about red carpet moments. After photos of him were uploaded online, many social media users commended his look. Instagram user mrrpmurphy, for instance, said that Porter won Best Dressed and that “there is no competition” for that title. Twitter user Mia Farrow wrote, “How fabulous is Billy Porter.”

Porter said via TV show and show business news Entertainment Weekly (EW) that the Academy Awards is a platform to create a conversation about what feminine, masculine, and everything in between is. He said he wanted to “shatter” the culture or idea that nobody would bat an eye if a woman wears pants but people are disgusted when a man wears a dress. “Why is that?” he asked. That is why he wore the tuxedo gown and shattered that kind of culture.

He believes that it is creating a “different lane” for people who are at a different place in their life.

When he arrived at the Academy Awards wearing the tuxedo-ball gown combo, it became one of the most talked-about red carpet moments / Photo by: Walt Disney Television via Flickr

 

Most-Searched Red Carpet Stars

Tech giant Google has recently shared the most-searched red carpet celebrities from its Year in Search data. It is an annual data that takes a look back at the most popular searches of 2019 and considered the biggest trend. This means that it counted the most searched terms and with the largest spikes in traffic this year.

Ranked number one for the most-searched red carpet stars is Billy Porter. Aside from his tuxedo gown, he was also most searched in the Google search engine for his The Blonds jumpsuit inspired by Cleopatra. His look was matched with 10-foot tall angel wings. People said that he “spread his wings” on the Met Gala pink carpet. The actor arrived at the gala carried by six men to complete the eccentric look. 

Second in rank is American rapper Cardi B. She is the first woman to win a Grammy Award for Best Rap Album. Her vintage Thierry Mugler Venus look was most searched in 2019. Her stylist Kollin Carter helped make the viral moment happen. Thierry Mugler is one of the most influential designers in the world who has helped define about 20 years of fashion.

Lady Gaga is the third most-searched red carpet star in 2019. While the American singer-songwriter is not a stranger to dramatic looks, considering her infamous meat dress, she also had other viral fashion moments this year. At the Golden Globes, for instance, she wore a blue Valentino gown. Her Academy Awards look also created headlines as she paired the Alexander McQueen dress with the 128-carat Tiffany diamond estimated to be worth $30 million. During the Met Gala, she wore a bejeweled bra and underwear set.
Other stars included in the list are chef Chris Fischer, Jenny McCarthy, South Korean boy band BTS, Caitlyn Jenner, Richard Madden, Brie Larson, and character “Brienne of Tarth” played by actress Gwendoline Christie.

These celebrities sure know how to make a splash.

Second in rank is American rapper Cardi B. She is the first woman to win a Grammy Award for Best Rap Album. Her vintage Thierry Mugler Venus look was most searched in 2019 / Photo by: JStone via Shutterstock