The Golden Globes' Infamous Woman in Red: My Year of Death Threats and Tragedy
Blanca Blanco, who drew backlash for flouting the red carpet blackout at last year's show, recalls the fallout and becoming a victim of the recent Malibu fires.
I've always done my own thing, but I didn't think it would be a big deal for me to wear a red dress to the Golden Globes last year. From what I had heard, only the nominees were going to wear black, and I thought it would be silly for me to show up in black.
Atria Couture made my dress. I wanted to stand strong and I felt so honored to be there, but what happened after I walked the red carpet was crazy. Photos of me went viral, I became a trending topic on Twitter, and I got death threats and tons of hate mail.
I support #MeToo — it had nothing to do with not supporting the cause. It was incredible to see all the courageous women come forward over the past year. I take responsibility for wearing color while everyone else wore black. I get that a lot of people were affected by what I wore — and some were supportive. I did an interview with Fox News and explained my reasoning, and that helped. Some good things happened. My social media following tripled, and my IMDb profile was ranked in the top 30 for several weeks.
I was able to stay busy all year, and I did some films and magazine photo shoots. I did a film called Betrayed, which shot in Michigan, and I played a villain. I had another film called Mission Possible that debuted in the Cannes market. I attended Paris Fashion Week and attended the Marrakech Film Festival. I shot a campaign for the clothing line Chiquelle.
It was a good year, but my life completely changed on Nov. 9. My boyfriend [actor John Savage] and I evacuated our house in Malibu because of the Woolsey Fire. While we were sitting in a restaurant in Camarillo, we watched flames hit our home on live TV. We both escaped with only what we could fit in a carry-on. I grabbed maybe six dresses, my passport and my bunny. But I did save my Golden Globes dress.
I experienced poverty when I was a kid, so I know what it feels like to go back to basics. I'm glad to be alive, and everything else is replaceable. I have so much experience and support and have built a lot of relationships. I have had so many designers and brands reach out to me, so my wardrobe is taken care of.
I never know if I'm going to be invited to the Golden Globes or a viewing party until the very last minute, but I would like to go again this year.
This story first appeared in the Jan. 4 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.