In Depth

Baftas: Duchess of Cambridge avoids Time’s Up with green dress

Kate gets a mixed reception for sticking to royal family’s ‘no politics’ protocol

The Duchess of Cambridge’s dresses are not usually the subject of politically charged debate, but her gown at last night’s Baftas ceremony became one of the evening’s talking points.

Echoing scenes from last month’s Golden Globes, the majority of female attendees - including Jennifer Lawrence, Angelina Jolie and Margot Robbie chose to dress in black for the ceremony.

The sartorial blackout has been adopted by the Time’s Up movement as a visual protest, drawing a “black line” under sexual harassment and exploitation in the movie industry.

However, the Duchess of Cambridge, who attended the ceremony alongside her husband, Prince William, opted for a deep green dress by designer Jenny Packham.

Royal-savvy observers pointed out that the choice not to participate in the “blackout” was in line with royal protocol, which discourages political statements of any kind and traditionally limits female royals to wearing black only for funerals and somber occasions.

However, some pointed out that if such a rule against wearing black does exist, the Duchess of Cambridge does not appear to have observed it in the past:

Many advocates of the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements objected to the framing of sexual harassment as a political issue:

Some pointed to dark shade of green as well as the black ribbon around the dress as a potential sign of the royal’s tacit support for the movement:

Frances McDormand’s choice of outfit also drew comment. The 60-year-old, who scooped the Best Actress award for her role in Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri, opted for a brightly-patterned frock which stood out among a sea of black.

Accepting her award, McDormand joked that she had “a little trouble with compliance”.

“But I want you to know I stand in full solidarity with my sisters tonight in black,” she added. “I also want to say that I appreciate a well-organised act of civil disobedience.”

Other political statements abounded. Taking another cue from the Golden Globes, where a slew of A-listers brought social justice activists as their plus-ones, several Bafta guests did likewise, the BBC reports.

Gemma Arterton, who starred in the West End version of the 2010 film Made In Dagenham, walked down the red carpet escorted by Gwen Davis and Eileen Pullen, two of the real-life protesters for pay equality.

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