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This Year’s Oscars Stage Will Feature Some Serious Bling

90,000 glittering Swarovski crystals, anyone?

oscars set design 2022
Courtesy David Korins Design

A rendering of the David Korins–designed set.


Get ready to be dazzled by the super-blinged-out design of the Dolby Theatre in honor of the 94th Academy Awards this Sunday. David Korins, who also lent his creative genius to the 2019 awards, was tapped again this year, and he teased out elements of the futuristic stage design in a series of Instagram posts, where he described the vision as “a modern portal into the future where we trade in the currency of elegance and electricity. A future where community and togetherness are front and center, and everything and everyone gets their own special moment to shine.”

oscars set design 2022
A detail shot of the undulating set coming together.
Linda Pianigiani

The award-winning designer, who’s responsible for the Broadway sets for Dear Evan Hansen and Hamilton, explained that “every piece of scenery glows from the inside, is light-emitting, and hopeful,” incorporating 90,000 Swarovski crystals, combined with LEDs, to create an optical illusion of shape and depth via a series of circular shapes that Vulture described as a “warp tunnel.”

“We wanted it to feel like there is an energy and the show is moving,” noted Will Packer, who is producing the awards broadcast with Shayla Cowan, during the Oscar’s press conference this week. “You will not feel like you’re watching the same show for however many hours it ends up being. So what we’re going for is this feeling of a show that continuously changes, just like a movie.”

oscars set design 2022
Each decorative element is made up of shimmering curtains of Swarovski crystals.
Linda Pianigiani

Korin also revealed that “we are decking over large sections of the audience,” extending the stage so that “winners and presenters are literally immersed in a sea of their peers,” part of a larger message of unity and togetherness, both in spirit and sartorial sparkle.

The Oscars will air live on ABC and online on March 27 at 8 p.m. EDT/5 p.m. PDT.

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