Nominees return to an actual red carpet at the 2021 Oscars

Brendan Morrow
·2 min read

And they're back.

At the 2021 Oscars on Sunday, celebrities returned to an actual, in-person red carpet after numerous major awards shows had nominees stay at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Academy Awards are taking place largely from Union Station in Los Angeles, although parts of the show are also expected to occur at the nearby Dolby Theatre, and hubs have also been set up at some overseas locations for nominees who couldn't travel to California.

The ceremony, of course, has still been dramatically altered by the pandemic. COVID-19 protocols are being implemented, with those in attendance being required to test negative for COVID-19 at least three times before the show, and the audience is limited to 170 people, according to Variety. The red carpet itself also certainly wasn't a full return to normalcy.

“It's not a traditional red carpet,” Oscars producer Stacey Sher previously explained, per the Los Angeles Times. "It's a teeny tiny red carpet. ... Many of those [red-carpet] conversations will happen. They are just going to happen in a more intimate way among the nominees. It's a very small footprint for safety reasons, obviously."

Still, major Hollywood stars being out and about on a red carpet was a notable sight, especially after the Emmys and Golden Globe Awards consisted of speeches being delivered remotely while winners accepted trophies from the comfort of their own homes. Sorry, nominees: There can be no sweatpants this time.

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