Hollywood’s New Guard Are the Ones to Watch on the Oscars Red Carpet

Young stars like Jessica Chastain, Michelle Williams, and Rooney Mara are the ones the style set will be watching on Oscar Sunday.

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Young Hollywood stars like Jessica Chastain, Michelle Williams, and Rooney Mara are the ones the style set will be watching on Oscar Sunday.
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Forget Angelina Jolie and Nicole Kidman, this year's red carpet spotlight will be centered on Hollywood's newest crop of starlets, most notably "Dragon Tattoo" star (and best actress nominee) Rooney Mara. Between a Vogue cover and this pitch-perfect Globes appearance in Nina Ricci, she's well placed to be the evening's style star to watch.
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What's more, Mara has the license -- thanks to both her character, Lisbeth Salander, and her striking looks -- to pull off a slew of edgier, fashion-forward looks. At the New York premiere of "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo," she wore this eye-catching cocktail dress by rising star designer Prabal Gurung.
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For the movie's London premiere, she sported a gorgeous Givenchy couture dress, and rumors have swirled since the label's couture presentation in January that she might sport one of the collection's edgy looks for the Oscars.
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Michelle Williams isn't really an upstart anymore, but she continues to make more interesting fashion choices than many of her contemporaries. The red Valentino gown she wore to the SAG Awards was one of the night's more note-worthy looks, boasting an asymmetrical hemline that gave the look a less formal appeal.
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Williams has also been known to sport more forward-thinking labels on the red carpet. At the SAG Awards, she sported a lush blue gown from Jason Wu's pre-fall collection (which won't hit stores until this summer).
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Jessica Chastain has quickly become one of the most prolific young starlet on the Hollywood scene, and she's got the fashion chops to back it up. While she's known for her chic choices, she hasn't yet settled on a specific look, per se, making her one of the more interesting stars to watch. At the SAG Awards, she wore a simple Calvin Klein gown in a vivid hue.
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At the Golden Globes, however, she wore a more grown-up Givenchy gown covered in pearls, and has since also worn high-end looks from labels like Alexander McQueen.
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Emma Stone really arrived on the fashion scene at last year's Golden Globes, when she wore a simple peach-colored gown by Calvin Klein. Since then, she's sported a succession of dead-on looks that feel youthful and forward-thinking at red carpet events, like the full-skirted McQueen dress she wore to the SAG Awards.
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At the Golden Globes, Stone sported a dramatic purple Lanvin gown with a plunging neckline and bold belt.
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Shailene Woodley's breakout role in this year's "The Descendents" catapulted her out of her teen world and into the realm of serious fashion. The 20-year-old star is now a style darling, cropping up at the Jason Wu show during New York Fashion Week in February. At the Golden Globes, she dazzled in a silvery Marchesa gown with minimal accessories.
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Critics were mixed on the floral L'Wren Scott gown Woodley wore to the SAG Awards, but we felt it was a fresh, bold choice for a young star.
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Rose Byrne was a fashion stand-out even before "Bridesmaids," but her red carpet appearances since have consistently upped the style ante, like this bold white jumpsuit from Elie Saab's couture collection.
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Byrne's "Bridesmaids" co-star, Kristen Wiig, didn't earn high marks for her look at the SAG Awards, but it's worth noting that the ensemble is by Balenciaga, a brand which rarely dresses celebrities for these events, which put Wiig firmly on the fashion set's radar.
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Natalie Portman isn't exactly new to the fashion world's radar -- her nominations for "Black Swan" last year made her one of the most watched stars on the red carpet -- but this award season has marked her grand return after an absence in which she had her first child. Her custom fuchsia Lanvin gown at the Globes was proof the star (and her style prowess) was back.
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At the SAG Awards, Portman sported a look from Giambattista Valli's just-debuted couture collection. Needless to say, it will be interesting to see what she wears as a presenter for this year's Academy Awards.
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