On March 4, 2018, the 90th Annual Academy Awards will air on ABC, giving us the chance to ooh and aah over all the celebrity red carpet looks (and find out who wins the awards too, of course). In honor of the 2018 Oscars, Wonderwall.com is taking a time machine back to 1998 to see what the hottest celebs were wearing on that very same red carpet two decades ago… starting with Jennifer Lopez. At her second-ever Academy Awards, Jenny from the block (who was still a year away from making her musical debut) chose a bias-cut silver gown with a sheer black overlay featuring a damask design and lace. The wide-open V-neck showed off her decollete, which she accessorized in total '90s style — with a choker. Keep reading to see more red carpet looks from the 1998 Oscars…
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Kate Winslet looked stunningly vintage on the red carpet. The British star, who was nominated for a best actress Oscar for her work in "Titanic," wore an emerald green Givenchy gown designed by Alexander McQueen that featured ornate gold embroidery.
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The same year U.S. figure skating champ Tara Lipinski won gold at the Olympics, she also strutted her stuff at the Academy Awards. The young athlete wore a plum camisole dress with a metallic embroidered sheer overlay and chunky silver heels. Tara and her figure skating BFF, Johnny Weir, would later become red carpet hosts at the Oscars and many other award shows as well as at the Winter Olympics.
Cher does not play when it comes to her red carpet fashion. Her only goal? To be as theatrical as possible (of her award show outfits, she once said, "I thought we were in show business?"). At the 1998 Academy Awards, the famed singer and actress had all eyes on her in this sheer white beaded cold-shoulder number with a bent halo headpiece. She also accessorized with a diamond-encrusted choker and a silver clutch. FYI: Cher was 51 here.
Sharon Stone (pictured with her then-husband, journalist Phil Bronstein) was the talk of the red carpet when she arrived in this shimmering lilac Vera Wang skirt and her husband's white button-up shirt from The Gap, proving that going full glam on the red carpet didn't have to break the bank.
Nominated for an Oscar for best supporting actress for "Boogie Nights" was the loveliest redhead in Hollywood, Julianne Moore. It turns out this was her first Academy Awards ceremony! While some fashion critics skewered the star for wearing a boxy white dress and matching white shawl, we're giving her a total pass because just a few months earlier, Julianne gave birth to her first child and, like any normal human woman, was working on getting her figure back. We think she looked fab.
Five years before supermodel Tyra Banks would become the host of her hit series "America's Next Top Model," she was slaying the red carpet in serious gowns like this one. At the 1998 Oscars, Tyra worked a gorgeous off-the-shoulder beaded dress with a long, creamy shawl that made her glow.
Madonna arrived on the 1998 Academy Awards red carpet with her brother, Christopher Ciccone, by her side. While Madge is known for her flair for fashion drama, she was surprisingly demure in this sexy blue Olivier Theyskens gown with an open corset and splash of baby blue tulle. We especially love her gleaming sapphire and diamond necklace.
If one thing is clear from this picture, it's that Minnie Driver, who was nominated for a best supporting actress Oscar for her work in "Good Will Hunting," was clearly feeling herself in this seductive floor-length red gown from Halston. We can't get over how stunning Minnie looks in this color. Bonus points for those matching ruby red lips and red fur stole.
Another Oscar nominee who may have gotten flack for her red carpet look — but who we're ready to defend — is British actress Helena Bonham Carter. While we'll admit the strapless, shimmery, lavender gown was a few sizes too big for the star, she looks happy and, dare we say, radiant? Plus, Helena could breathe (and eat!) in comfort without feeling like she was going to bust out of her gown at any second. As for the completely unnecessary see-through tulle shawl, we're just going to pretend we didn't see it at all.
Country music star Trisha Yearwood hadn't yet married Garth Brooks and didn't have her own Food Network show in March 1998, but she still had our attention when she hit the Academy Awards red carpet that year. The curvy blonde shimmered in a beaded champagne gown featuring a beautiful embellished sheer overlay with thick gold trim. She paired the look with a tiny white clutch and delicate diamond jewelry.
Look closely, because you probably don't recognize soap opera star (turned "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" cast member) Lisa Rinna. In 1998, the actress was pregnant with her first child with husband Harry Hamlin but didn't let her growing tummy stop her from shining on the Oscars red carpet. Lisa wore a beautiful mint green open-back gown with delicate white embroidery on the skirt and matching shawl.
One of the cutest couples on the red carpet at the 1998 Academy Awards was Cameron Diaz and her "There's Something About Mary" co-star Matt Dillon. The two would end up breaking up shortly after the Oscars (whoops) but in this moment, they looked totally in love. Matt opted for an all-black tuxedo with a striped tie while Cameron looked '70s chic in a sheer white peasant blouse over a shimmery camisole paired with a striped floor-length blue-and-white skirt. What everyone really loved about Cameron's look, however, was her chin-length bob.
Halle Berry wore one of our favorite looks of the night at the 1998 Academy Awards. Her sleek off-white satin Vera Wang gown with asymmetrical lace panel inserts moved on her body like a second skin. While the dress was everything, her messy updo was tragically not. For this kind of gown, Halle should have rocked a more vintage Hollywood hairstyle.
In 1998, Drew Barrymore was in the middle of her own personal renaissance and shifting from supporting actress to leading lady. The jubilant blonde beauty managed to turn everyone's head at the Academy Awards that year, thanks in part to her sleek black non-designer dress and the ample amounts of glitter she'd applied all over her body (hey, it was the '90s and we all loved to sparkle). Her accessories for the night were two white daisies in her hair — and her megawatt smile.
Actress Elisabeth Shue proved all that glitters is gold at the 1998 Academy Awards. The popular '80s star wore a fitted gown with intricate gold beadwork, but that wasn't the only reason she was glowing. Five months earlier, Elisabeth welcomed her first child. The only thing we don't love about her look is the gold satchel-style purse that hung open by her side.
British actress Judi Dench went for simple elegance on the 1998 Academy Awards red carpet. The legendary star, who was nominated for best actress for her work in "Mrs. Brown" that year, kept it classy with a charcoal grey organza slip dress and sheer organza coat by Nicole Farhi. Following Coco Chanel's rule of wearing minimal accessories, Judi kept her decollete bare while accentuating her look with diamond earrings and some sparkly hand and wrist jewels.
Helen Hunt kept her 1998 Oscars red carpet look decidedly low-key in a strapless baby blue satin gown with a matching wrap by Tom Ford for Gucci. The actress was nominated for best actress for her work in "As Good as it Gets" and ended up taking home her first Academy Award. Standing by her side was her then-fiance, "The Simpsons" voice actor Hank Azaria.
Is there an award for best matched couple at the Oscars? If so, it should totally go to Samuel L. Jackson and wife LaTanya Richardson. The couple were the picture of elegance in their complementary Hugo Boss tuxedos. LaTanya added a gorgeous V-shaped diamond choker for an extra touch of glamour.
Frances McDormand aimed to stand out on the red carpet and she succeeded. The "Fargo" actress stunned in a crimson slip dress and heavily embroidered, floor-length sheer jacket by Vera Wang at the 1998 Oscars. Tying the look together, Frances added a pair of rose-tinted shades (which we're not crazy about). The dress though? Pure gorgeousness.
At the 1998 Academy Awards, a young Anna Paquin arrived with her brother, Andrew Paquin, by her side, looking lovely in a strapless lavender column dress. Unfortunately, Anna tied a matching lavender sweater over her shoulders, giving herself a country-club cocktail-hour appearance. We get that it was cold outside, but this was a major no-no for the red carpet.
Robin Williams brought two dates to the 1998 Academy Awards: then-wife Marsha Garces (left) and mom Laura McLaurin (right). Robin, who was nominated for (and won!) the best supporting actor Oscar for his work in the film "Good Will Hunting," stood out in a Nehru-collar knee-length Armani evening jacket. Marsha kept it simple in a black dress with a sparkling black coat and Laura turned it up a notch with a rhinestone-embellished black gown and playful fur stole.
We love the fit of the navy blue one-shouldered Grecian-inspired gown that Mira Sorvino — who'd won an Oscar two years earlier — wore to the 1998 Academy Awards. To the right, you can catch a glimpse of Geena Davis baring one shoulder in a fur-trimmed white shrug and glittery white vintage Alex Perry gown.
Kim Basinger, who was nominated for (and won) the Oscar for best supporting actress for her performance in "L.A. Confidential," created her own spotlight in this dazzling pistachio-colored satin Escada gown with a full train. We love that she chose an Old Hollywood hairstyle versus the trendy "messy updo" so many other actresses wore that year. To the right we also spy Meg Ryan in an all-black, long-sleeved Vera Wang gown and rose-tinted shades.
Maybe "Party of Five" actress Neve Campbell was being a little extra at the 1998 Academy Awards, but can you blame her? On film's biggest night of the year, Neve wore a silvery-plum Gianfranco Ferré gown that featured an intricately embroidered overlay and matching floor-length wrap. While the dress itself was gorgeous, Neve's curly updo gave her a debutante look.