Chloé Zhao Makes History By Looking Comfortable At The Oscars

The ‘Nomadland’ director is the first woman to collect an Oscar wearing tennis shoes in the award show’s 93-year history.

Well it's Monday morning, and like every Monday morning I have just one question: what is Nomadland director Chloé Zhao up to? The 30-something Chinese director, you may remember, is notoriously casual. A couple of months ago, she won a swathe of Golden Globes in braids and a long-sleeved green shirt. She almost looked as comfy as this guy.

This time, though, the Oscars (airing live right now) have specifically requested that attendees pretend the pandemic is over and drape themselves in non-casual attire, so we're finally getting to see Chloe in a dress. And I've got to say – props to Chloe for making this (quite rude) dress code work for her. For the Oscars, Zhao paired a beige gown with tennis shoes and braids; still managing to look 100% herself.

I just very much appreciate Zhao's no-bullshit approach to glitzy awards shows. She is truly the Bernie Sanders of awards season. Practical. Comfortable. Unwilling to surrender to all the pomp and the splendour. Because why should she?

Don't get me wrong, it's a stunning outfit.

But there's something about her outfit and her general demeanour that is quietly resistant. She is not here to swan around in haute couture, to heat style her hair until it's damaged beyond recognition, to pretend that an awards show is anything but what it is.

She's a film director, she turned up to the show, but she's not going to make a big deal about it. Good for her.

Written by Reena Gupta, a Melbourne-based writer for MTV Australia. Follow her on Twitter at @purpletank.

More Oscars stuff:

All The Winners At The 2021 Oscars 

Minari Nails What True Asian Representation Looks Like

Latest News