Among the many things people lambast celebrities for — questionable politics, over-sharing on Instagram, revolving door marriages, etc. — one of the more understandable complaints we’ve heard is coming from the fashion world. Namely, mispronouncing designer names.
According to a new report in the Wall Street Journal, the problem is dire enough that awards-show-bound celebrities frequently need multiple reminders. “Many stars attending the Globes will receive last-minute phone calls, texts or handwritten index cards reminding them not only whose dress or tuxedo they’re wearing, but how to pronounce the designer label’s name.”
Perhaps the cues and clues are due to moments like Steve Carell’s 2016 flubbing of Brunello Cucinelli, pronouncing it more like a plate of pasta. A few in-the-know social media observers roasted him for it…
#GoldenGlobes Steve Carrell butchers his designers name – Brunello Cucinelli he says "Cuchillini'. Ha.
— Sarah Hubbard (@S4Hubbard) January 11, 2016
Steve Carrell's stylist is getting blacklisted for not teaching him how to pronounce Brunello Cucinelli
— Pussywillows, Dottie (@appelbomb) January 11, 2016
But it’s easy enough to see why some of the high-fashion labels can be tongue twisters. Fashion is a global industry and there just aren’t that many top-tier Smiths and Jones, at least not on the red carpet. If only everyone just wore Ralph Lauren (not pronounced “lore-EN,” by the way), right Steve?
It’s also the extensive amount of media, social and otherwise, present at events like this that make things like name pronunciation and spelling so important for global events like awards shows. Last year’s Golden Globes broadcast had over 18 million viewers, according to Variety. Other tentpoles in awards show season, such as the Oscars, can draw twice that many viewers, so it’s understandable that such focused attention on red carpet fashion and the designers who put their names on tuxes and dresses for the stars be addressed correctly.
Thankfully, there’s the Internet, so there are plenty of resources out there to learn how to pronounce some of the most challenging houses around, like this handy webpage. So you don’t have to be caught with your pants down when talking about fashion anymore.
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