Extravagant jewels aren’t the only accessory at this year’s Oscars. During the 95th annual Academy Awards on Sunday in Los Angeles, nominees like Cate Blanchett and Bill Nighy wore blue ribbon pins to show solidarity with global asylum seekers.
Created on behalf of the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) Coalition, the blue ribbons are meant to symbolize “support for refugees and displaced people around the world,” per a UNHCR statement. The pins are part of the coalition’s #WithRefugees initiative, which seeks to “send a powerful visual message that everyone has the right to seek safety, whoever, wherever, whenever.”
Viewers of the 2023 BAFTAs might have also spotted blue ribbons on the red carpet. Jamie Lee Curtis and Angela Bassett wore them to the British awards ceremony in February. Curtis, who was nominated for her role in “Everything, Everywhere, All at Once,” said that Blanchett inspired her to wear the pin.
“My friend Cate Blanchett is asking people to remind us all in the midst of all the season of shiny things that, of course, there are terrible refugee crises going on all over the world everywhere all at once, and we need to do our part,” said Curtis.
Each ribbon was handmade by the Knotty Tie Co. in Denver. The local haberdashery helps refugees secure jobs, training and education.
In a statement to the press, Blanchett shared why the cause is so important to her. “Whenever I have met refugees — in places such as Lebanon, Jordan or Bangladesh, in the U.K., or back home in Australia — what has struck me has not been their ‘otherness’ but how many things we share in common,” said Blanchett, who has been a UNHCR ambassador since 2016.
The annual Oscars celebrates film, cinematography and the artists who bring characters to life. This year, Jimmy Kimmel hosts the show. Performances include Rihanna and Lady Gaga, and presenters include Dwayne Johnson, Emily Blunt, Janelle Monáe and more. For the 95th annual ceremony, the red carpet was swapped for a champagne color due to an aesthetic choice to enhance the photography during the arrivals. The champagne carpet is the first to change from red since the 33rd Oscars in 1961.