Though stars may have dazzled on the 2023 Emmy Awards carpet Monday night, many feel they did so in spite of a drab and distracting venue decor.
While she did not attend the ceremony, Chrissy Teigen expressed disapproval of the design that night, writing in an Instagram Story that she was “begging award shows to have better looking step and repeats.”
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When television’s biggest names descended on the Peacock Theater in Los Angeles on Jan. 15, they were met with a silver carpet and black backdrop — also known as a “step and repeat” — decorated with the words “Fox” and “Emmys.”
“It seems so simple,” Teigen continued in her criticism. “Some floral and simplicity. God I pray.”
Her opinion also appears to be shared by many others. “The backdrop was ugly,” a longtime event photographer who requested anonymity tells The Hollywood Reporter. “I understand Fox and the Emmys want their signage, but less is more on the carpet. It’s hard to make everybody happy, but elegance and not too much pattern is better.”
Many online argued that the design appeared unfinished and distracting. “The Emmys step and repeat looks like the construction site of a luxury building with zero amenities FOX is so deeply unserious lmfao,” one fan wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
“You don’t want the backdrop to be the star,” the photographer added. “The person in front of it should be the star.”
This year’s Emmys aren’t the first time a carpet’s design has led to disappointment. Last year’s Oscars pale beige “champagne” carpet at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles was the first non-red carpet at the Academy Awards since 1961, when, per Academy researchers, a red carpet was first used outside the entrance to the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium.
The change garnered significant pushback online, including from some of the ceremony’s own guests of honor.
Jamie Lee Curtis, who went on to take home the Oscar for best supporting actress that night, tweeted a day before that “their carpet is going to match my drapes” when she learned of the champagne color after selecting a beige dress that happened to match.
Though there seems to be no use trying to make everyone happy, the event photographer has some advice: “Please ask the photographers prior to printing your backdrop or lighting your event. There are people that ask me now about their events and I’m so grateful. If you want to spend money, please get opinions.”
The Hollywood Reporter reached out to reps from the Television Academy and Fox for comment.
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