The Golden Globes kick off the awards season Jan. 10, and 10 of our favorite actresses are in the running to pick up shiny statuettes. Deep behind the scenes right now, that probably means the stars are:
* slamming through racks of designer gowns while ignoring the comments of stylists
* frantically snapping up designer dresses with sleeves
* shopping for shapewear incognito
* scrolling through online photos for hair and makeup looks
* weighing which specs will look sharpest when they read their acceptance remarks.
So join me in a stroll down the red carpets of yesteryear to predict what the stars will wear this Sunday night:
1. Felicity Huffman. There's nothing desperate about former Housewives star Huffman, nominated for her role as special agent Barb Hanlon on American Crime. Justifiably proud of her buff bod, the 53-year-old favors super-sexy sleeveless sheaths with slashed necklines and peekaboo panels.
At the 2015 Golden Globes, Huffman opted for a winter-white Lorena Sarbu sheath with illusion side panels, her hair in a casual sideswept updo. I'd love to see her in Versace this year — a glittering black one-shoulder cutout dress, perhaps, or a sexy black sheath.
2. Helen Mirren. Forget about playing it safe: At 70, Mirren — nominated for her turn as acidic gossip columnist Hedda Hopper in Trumbo — loves to show off her curves in dresses that shout star power. Like another royal (Queen Elizabeth II), Dame Helen opts for crowd-pleasing hues with plenty of sparkling bling, such as the contoured navy gown with illusion side panels and sleeves by Carmen Marc Valvo that she sported at the Roundabout Theatre Company's spring gala in 2015.
This year, I'm guessing, she'll go for high-drama sparkle in shimmery gold: A single-sleeved gown in lamé from Badgley Mischka is one possibility; a sparkly gold number from Marchesa is another.
3. Jamie Lee Curtis. Nominated for her role as Dean Cathy Munsch on Scream Queens, Curtis prefers cutting-edge dresses that emphasize her athlete's body. Solid black is a consistent choice, but Curtis occasionally dips into white or navy, like the deep-V, long-sleeved fitted sheath she showed off at the premiere of Spare Parts in London last year.
With her spiky gray gamine hair providing an edgy partner to her natural makeup look, "less is more" could be the motto for Curtis' style. This year I think she'll go Hollywood classic, rocking a black gown like designer Zac Posen's (but with added sleeves). Or perhaps she'll wow us in Ralph Lauren's slinky, screaming-red tank — think "elongated swimsuit" and you'll get the effect.
4. Viola Davis. I love the element of unpredictability Davis always brings to red-carpet fashions. With her shapely shoulders and toned arms, she can (and does) get away not with murder, but with haute mode, nailing a variety of looks from simple halter-neck sheaths to bedazzled dresses. Topping that off, Davis looks good in everything from statement colors to simple white.
At this year's Globes, she'd look divine in Marchesa's strapless tulle gown — either the one that looks like ruffled feathers or the hot pink one. There's also a sparkly rose-pink gown with flutter sleeves by Elie Saab that seems designed uniquely for Davis. With her defined eyes, jewels galore and ever-changing hairstyle, dullness is one thing she will never be found guilty of.
5. Jane Fonda. We love the way she continues to blur the line between sophisticated and showgirl at 78: elegant lines, but lots of dazzle in between. Fonda is not afraid to take color risks — anything from scarlet to emerald to sunny yellow. She's a trend flouter as well, always game to wear a transparent inset, a snug sheath or a jumpsuit. Accessories? They're shimmery from head to toe, with a belt often added to show off her small waist.
The beauty regimen remains classically the same: subtle lips, smoky eyes and that trademark tousled coif. Fonda could go the Versace route at the Globes, but why not a curve-hugging gown — or even an outrageous sequined jumpsuit — from Naeem Khan?
6. Judith Light. If you stood a model-esque 5 foot 7 and had a slim, slinky build at the age of 66, you'd be willing to take a few wild fashion risks, too! And that's just what Transparent star Light has done, opting for trendier looks — think jumpsuits and midis — that suit her to an LGBT.
A similar set of initials — the LBD, or little black dress — do not come close to capturing Light's public style, which tends to be fairly theatrical. For the Globes I think she'll work a transparent trend: Carolina Herrera's pink shirtdress-style layered gown, maybe, or the ruffled black-lace version from Elie Saab.
7. Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Feminine but fashionable is this Veep's (now president's) look, with a fondness for one-shoulder dresses or sheaths in white or black. Louis-Dreyfus likes to bare her toned arms and shoulders — which, let's face it, are what we focus on during speeches at the Globes.
As a comedian who knows that 50-plus style is no laughing matter, she has learned to pack on the eye makeup — and no one does sultry eyes better. I'd love to see her in asymmetrical white again: Badgley Mischka's one-shoulder gown or a sculpted sheath such as Pamella Roland's in peachy pink and apricot.
8. Lily Tomlin. More Grandma than Frankie in real life, Tomlin sticks to black as her gala go-to. She's comfiest when covered up and discreet — high necks and sleeves, and pants or floor-length skirts. And though switchboard operator Ernestine would be appalled, Tomlin wears her wavy hair in a layered, naturally tousled bob, then adds impact eyeliner to define her trademark hooded eyes.
At the Golden Globes this year, I'd love to see her in something fresh: Elie Saab has a beautiful black tuxedo jacket with black lace, but Tomlin would look equally smashing in Valentino's long-sleeved black blouson gown.
9) Maggie Smith. Dame Maggie has attended few galas on this side of the pond in the past few years, but she causes a stir whenever she steps out in London. If Smith shows up at the Globes, I'm betting she'll opt for her usual: black trousers and top, with a standout tailored jacket in a color — soft ivory or blush pink? — that lights up the screen.
I'd love to see her in a custom-fitted pantsuit in white and silver, with a long, sparkly jacket and shimmer top from Badgley Mischka. Another smart choice: an exotic flowing gown by Alberta Ferretti — with a statement necklace, of course!
10. Robin Wright. From her blond chop to her tight togs, there's an edgy, sleek chic to Wright's fashion sense. Her clothing choices tend toward lean, mean silhouettes with an athletic or menswear twist. (Uh, Robin, you do realize it's OK to occasionally leave Claire Underwood behind, right?)
Her outfits at recent award shows — especially the white tuxedo jumpsuit she chose for the 2014 Emmys — have struck just the right balance of fashionable and sophisticated, masculine and feminine. I bet her Ralph Lauren streak will continue at this year's Globes — taking the form, perhaps, of his red dress with peekaboo cutouts — but I wish she'd go for a more daring choice: Narciso Rodriguez's sleeveless black leather tunic and white trousers.