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How to walk down a red carpet

Have you been invited to a red carpet event and wondered how to handle it? I understand it can feel overwhelming with a combination of excitement and nervousness.

After managing red carpets in Australia and working on prestigious red carpets in Los Angeles, I have seen and experienced my fair share of red carpet events. The Red Ball gala in Melbourne held in 2015 is a fond memory of collaborating with Trumpet Events under my Australian company, Dawn til Dusk Publicity. With Fight Cancer Foundation patrons Deborra-Lee Furness and Hugh Jackman, Kerri-Anne Kennerley, Eric Bana, Magda Szubanski, Shane Jacobson, Gina Riley, Jane Turner, Alan Fletcher and Jennifer Hansen, Sam Frost, Paul O'Brien, and many others in attendance. It was a busy red carpet managed by my team.


I've also walked actors and talent down prestigious red carpets like Universal Pictures' The Black Phone Los Angeles Premiere.


And believe it or not, I've learned some unspoken rules through observations and experience over the years. It's better to have a PR representative with you. And I'm available for hire to walk you down a red carpet if you need me. But if you can't afford it, these are the top 5 things you should do.


1/ Arrive on time if you are a RISING star

You want to avoid competing with the A-list and B-list stars for media attention. Most media will brush you aside, and you'll be as quick off the carpet as you started. To ensure you can interview with some press outlets on the red carpet, I strongly advise arriving on time or within the first 15 minutes of the start time. The carpets aren't as busy, and it is much easier to snag an interview.

2/ Name on a card for photo editors

In North America, photographers and mainly photo editors need your name to ensure they caption your photo correctly. This is important when you want to find your photo on the wires like Getty Images. Or to ensure correct spelling if your photo ever gets published in the media. The editors are often in a back room and away from the carpet, given cards full of images throughout the night that they have to sort on-site. Every person can't know every talent walking down the carpet, so this helps them remain efficient and tag your photo correctly. They are literally sorting thousands of images per event.


3/ Bring your passes, wristbands, and tickets

If the event organizers sent you or your rep tickets, passes, and wristbands, ensure you have them and don't assume you don't need them. Often security needs them, and there is a process implemented for everyone's safety. I've seen major names have to wait until their car came back around to grab the pass they left in the backseat. It creates an awkward moment as we all know they are someone, but the major events have safety protocols, and it isn't worth the hassle of forgetting. Make it easy for yourself and others.


4/ Photo pit first

The top of the carpet will always have the photographers. You only have a short time to pose as the PRs need to keep a consistent flow, especially if it is busy and backed up. The PR and photographers will tell you where to stand. Then just take one side step, pose, and then another side step, pose, etc, until you reach the interview section of the carpet.


5/ Press interviews

This is the section you ideally want a PR to walk you down the carpet as it is their job to line up interviews for you. Unfortunately, only some journalists will want to talk to you, and it can be easier for the PR to receive the no than the talent directly. Each press person has their agenda and plan going into the event. The top of the carpet is the top-tier outlets, which are then organized by media outlet reach or relevance to the carpet. It is the peeking order of the press, especially at the big award shows and events. So if you are a rising star, you might have the most success from mid to end of the carpet lined up with the press for an interview.


WATCH footage from the 2015 Red Ball red carpet HERE.

2015 Red Ball in Melbourne (23rd Anniversary)


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