Why Evan Rachel Wood's Golden Globes Suit Is Important

Evan Rachel Wood arrives to the 74th Annual Golden Globe Awards
Kevork Djansezian/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Evan Rachel Wood arrives to the 74th Annual Golden Globe Awards held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Jan. 8, 2017. 

The ever-edgy Evan Rachel Wood took over the Internet on Sunday night when the Westworld actress wore a custom Altuzarra silk pantsuit to the Golden Globes instead of the customary dress. While few were shocked by the actress/signer's sartorial choice (she's known for a powerful, androgynous look, anyways), the real headlines were made in her feminist reasoning behind the pick.

“This is my third nomination and I’ve been to the Globes six times, and I’ve worn a dress every time,” she said during the pre-show to Ryan Seacrest, who was inadvertently matching Wood in a black tux, white shirt and white bow tie. “I love dresses -- I’m not trying to protest dresses -- but I wanted to make sure that young girls and women knew they aren’t a requirement. And that you don’t have to wear one if you don’t want to, and to just be yourself because your worth is more than that."


When Billboard spoke to Wood exclusively back in June, she expressed a similar outlook on non-binary gender dressing. "I've struggled with gender norms my whole life, always feeling like I wasn't black-and-white," Wood said. "I was in this gray area, and gray areas really scare people because you can't define them."

Nurturing this "gray area" is why Evan chose to wear pants instead of a dress. In this political climate, when so much feels uncertain, women and young girls need strong, accepting mentors to look up to. For many, including Evan, that means not restricting your chosen mentor to any particular gender.

"I met Bowie when I was 15 backstage at his Reality tour," Wood told Billboard about her role model. "And I blacked out completely. I grew up idolizing David Bowie, and we [Rebel and a Basketcase bandmate Zach Villa and I ] were in the middle of writing the album when he died. It gave us a whole new source of inspiration; a feeling like we had to keep the torch burning." 

The day of the Golden Globes just so happened to be Bowie's birthday, and there is no better way to "keep the torch burning" than embodying the "ever-revolving, ever-changing work of art" that was the late singer. While Wood told Seacrest she had chosen to "go as an homage to Marlene Dietrich and Victor/Victoria, and David Bowie because it was his birthday," her reasoning also connects back to that "gray area" she's struggled with all her life. As she told Billboard, "You couldn't define [Bowie], and when I was growing up, that’s how I felt about myself."