A-list stars attend pre-Oscars Vanity Fair dinner


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Vanity Fair magazine and luxury brand Ermenegildo Zegna hosted a star-studded dinner Wednesday night in Hollywood to celebrate two charitable causes, international relief organization Oxfam America and the Green Carpet Challenge.

Guests included Colin Firth, Cameron Diaz, Gary Oldman, Demian Bichir, Emily Blunt, John Krazinski, Kimora Lee, Kenneth Branagh, Djimon Honsu, Kristen Davis and Vanity Fair editor in chief Graydon Carter. The event was part of Vanity Fair’s ‘Campaign Hollywood,’ a weeklong series of charity-related events leading up to the Oscars on Sunday.


The first of the evening’s celebrated causes was the Green Carpet Challenge, a crusade by actor Colin Firth’s wife, Livia, to raise the profile of sustainable fashion. For the third year in a row, she has challenged top fashion houses (Yves Saint Laurent, Lanvin, Giorgio Armani and Tom Ford, among them) to use sustainable fabrics when designing awards show gowns and tuxedos, and celebrities to wear them and share their stories on the red carpet. (Her latest successes? Viola Davis wore a Valentino eco-friendly gown to the British film and TV awards earlier this month, and Michael Fassbender wore an Armani eco-friendly tux. )

Livia Firth was mum about who she has recruited for the Green Carpet Challenge at Sunday’s Oscar awards, but did say that meetings with stylists have been going well.

And she had nothing but praise for dinner sponsor Zegna, which dressed many of the guys in attendance for the occasion. Firth owns an eco-consultancy business in London, and has visited clothing factories to advise on their practices. But Zegna ‘was already doing it,’ she said of the fourth-generation, family-owned Italian business, founded in 1910 by Ermenegildo Zegna, a passionate naturalist who planted half a million trees in the area around his family’s textile factory in the Biella Alps.

Anna Zegna, who heads up communications and store development for the brand, was in town from Italy to attend the dinner, and explained that her family business has been recycling since the time of her grandfather. There is very little waste at the factories, she said, and the dyes are all organic.

Oxfam was the other of the night’s causes, and several of the guests had traveled to war-torn areas of Africa as ambassadors for the organization. Hearing about the trips, one of the most interesting things to me was imagining how it must feel as a celebrity to be completely anonymous. Lyndsay Cruz, a senior advisor at Oxfam, said in all her years of visiting refugee camps with the likes of Scarlett Johansson and others, not one celebrity has ever been recognized.

Now that’s a reality check far, far removed from Oscar week.



Golden Globes 2012: Giorgio Armani and the Green Carpet Challenge

Rooney Mara, Kate Beckinsale and others at the Costume Designers Guild Awards

--Booth Moore

Top photo: From left, actor Colin Firth wearing Ermenegildo Zegna, Livia Firth, actress Emily Blunt and actor John Krasinski wearing Ermenegildo Zegna. Bottom photo: From left, actress/model Kimora Lee, actor Djimon Hounsou wearing Ermenegildo Zegna and President of Oxfam America Raymond Offenheiser. Credit: Charley Gallay / Getty Images