For some, the real competition at the Golden Globe Awards takes place before the ceremony. The fashion showcased at the red carpet typically sets a precedent for the awards shows – and, according to fashion columnist Louise Roe, that precedent this year will be risky colors and adventurous designs.
"The last couple of seasons we've seen a lot of nudes and blushes," Roe told The Hollywood Reporter. "It's pretty, but we like to do the opposite of last season. Expect lots of corals and cornflower blues – not quite pastel, but bright, zingy colors."
Roe referred to this trend as "Tropicana South Pacific" and said it encompasses not only bold colors, but also a distinct beach vibe – "almost grass skirts."
She also predicted an abundance of 1970s-inspired fashion in the vein of Studio 54 party girl Bianca Jagger.
Most importantly, expect the unexpected when the stars take to the red carpet at the Beverly Hilton on Sunday.
"All eyes will be on the young, new stars," Roe said, singling out Carey Mulligan, Mila Kunis and Jennifer Lawrence as newcomers to look out for. "The huge fashion houses snap them up."
Red carpet veterans will also take risks this year. Some, such as Helena Bonham-Carter, consistently defy expectations with their unique senses of style.
"She's in this sort of Victorian time warp of corsets and bosoms and silk," Roe said of the British actress. "She has fun with Vivian Westwood, and she doesn't like to follow trends – she knows what fits her body and goes with it."
Other seasoned awards-goers might surprise viewers when they show up. Roe suggested keeping an eye on nominees Michelle Williams and Julianne Moore.
Blue Valentine star Williams has worn bold dresses in the past, such as her trend-setting mustard yellow Vera Wang gown at the 2006 Oscars. Although Roe believes she will most likely wear something elegant and classic at this year's Globes, her new pixie cut "opens up new styling doors" that she might take advantage of.
Moore, who received a supporting actress nom for The Kids Are All Right, is "getting edgier the older she gets." She recently became the new face of Bulgari, settling any dispute over her jewelry, but her choice of a dress designer is still up in the air, though Roe identifies Tom Ford as a strong candidate. The two became close friends last year when she starred in his feature film debut, A Single Man.
As for particular labels, Roe predicts New York luxury brand Marchesa will be particularly popular this season.
"It's very elegant, perfect for the red carpet," she said of the company co-founded by Georgina Chapman, Harvey Weinstein's wife. "Their latest collection was beautiful. We saw a lot of origami shapes and daring silhouettes."
She added that "naughty cut-outs and leather" are also in style.
That's not to say fashion traditionalists will be disappointed. Roe explains that designer-client relations are just as, if not more, important than what's currently in style.
"The red carpet in Hollywood has become a game in a way. You get all the trends you expect to see, but the scoop is that it's more important to look at the relationships people have with designers."
She named best actress candidate Natalie Portman as an example. Although Portman recently signed a deal to represent Dior perfume, she also maintains a strong relationship with designer Rodarte, who dressed her for her role in Black Swan. Portman "may combine a Dior handbag or jewelry with a Rodarte dress," Roe said.
Expect at least two other stars to play it safe. Roe believes Annette Bening will go the opposite way of her Kids Are All Right co-star Moore and stick with Armani, while Amy Adams will probably wear Carolina Herrera, her go-to designer for the past three Oscars. Herrera is known for building strong, lasting relationships with her clients, who include Renee Zellweger and Nicole Kidman.