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Besides stirring up Oscar buzz, the start of the holiday movie season provided a few scintillating fashion moments. “Cold Mountain” kicked off the whirl of premieres on the West Coast, with Nicole Kidman strolling the red carpet in an Ungaro pantsuit. For her role as a Southern belle Kidman wore hoopskirts, but she survived the subzero temperatures during filming in Romania wearing men’s clothes while pretending to do farm work. “I prefer pants, as you can see,” she said. Meanwhile, co-star Renée Zellweger went girlie in a black satin cocktail number, looking nothing like the frump she plays in “Bridget Jones: The End of Reason.” “It must be the dress,” said Zellweger. “The dress is doing all the work tonight.”

The next evening at the premiere of “Something’s Gotta Give,” Amanda Peet chose Chanel. “It’s very feminine and bohemian,” she said, “yet is still chic enough for the red carpet.” She was less cool while stripping for a love scene with co-star Jack Nicholson. “I was literally shaking,” she admitted.

This story first appeared in the December 15, 2003 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

But Scarlett Johansson — a self-confessed “big Prada whore” — wasn’t afraid to go nude at the “Girl With a Pearl Earring” premiere. She traded in the “giant burlap sack” she wore in the movie for a sheer gown, and swapped out the earring to wear a jewel in her hair instead — a last-minute gift from her hairdresser.

In New York, Julia Roberts and her “kittens” — Julia Stiles, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ginnifer Goodwin and Kirsten Dunst — celebrated the premiere of “Mona Lisa Smile” at the Plaza. A radiant Roberts flitted around the hotel ballroom in Chanel and a scent that made the men — or at least Maggie’s brother, Jake — swoon. “You smell so good,” Jake told Roberts, before giving a congratulatory hug.

“Jake has probably more reason to be here than anybody,” said Maggie, just back from a stint in Tony Kushner’s “Homebody/

Kabul” in Los Angeles. Though he isn’t in the movie, Jake is dating Kirsten Dunst, who was wearing a turquoise outfit designed by friend Milla Jovovich. The burning question was where to head next. “My girlfriend likes to go dancing,” he said.

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