Natalie Portman: Dressing the Baby Bump for the Oscars

Natalie PortmanIt's a toss-up which is putting the bigger smile on Natalie Portman's face these days. Is it her Academy Award nomination for best actress in Black Swan? Or is it the baby she's expecting with choreographer Benjamin Millepied?

After watching her turn to other moms for advice at the annual Newsweek Oscar roundtable this week, I'm willing to bet it's a little bit of both. She may be one of the hottest actresses in Hollywood at the moment, but Portman has got two new adventures intersecting next month. She's got to find a dress for the Oscars! That will fit over that bump!


Fortunately, these are not uncharted waters. Women have been getting pregnant for centuries, and women have been accepting Academy Awards since the 1920s. Portman's in luck: the two have intersected a time or two. From Eva Marie Saint in 1954 to Susan Sarandon in 1991, Meryl Streep in 1982, and Portman's fellow 2011 nominee Annette Bening in 2000, the red carpet has been a baby bump watcher's dream.

Her best bet to keep up with the changing fashions is to stick to this past decade, and there are plenty of choices even there.The No Strings Attached star would be wise to attach herself to one of the stylists who dressed these ladies:

Cate Blanchett

Cate Blanchett knew there was no hiding her eight-month-pregnant bump in February 2008, so she did one better. The nominee was up for both best actress and best supporting actress, and she made sure to put her best foot forward with sexy silver stilettos and a plunging neckline that showed off the already pregnancy-enhanced decolletage. Much earlier along in the pregnancy, Portman won't have such a noticeable belly, but she sported a dress with a similar neckline in Venice this past fall and looked fab. Now imagine how much better it would look with those baby-boosted-boobies.

Jessica Alba

Jessica Alba didn't become one of the sexiest moms alive without dressing the part. She showed up at the 2008 Oscars just to be seen -- she wasn't nominated -- and her feathered Marchesa gown landed her on a host of best dressed lists. Portman should take note of how well she hid the belly with something loose and flowing. Alba wouldn't deliver daughter Honor until June of that year, putting her somewhat closer to the nominee's undisclosed due date.

Nicole Kidman

I know what you're thinking. Nicole Kidman is pregnant in this picture? Actually, the 2011 nominee for best actress in Rabbit Hole was just beginning to show that there was an itty bitty Sunday Rose in her belly back in 2008. But Kidman took advantage of the slimming black of this Balenciaga gown to help offset the belly, and that stunning bling certainly pulled the eyes upward. Kidman was part of the roundtable with Portman; wonder if she gave her the name of a good jeweler?

What are some of the other rules of dressing the bump Portman should keep in mind?

Images via Splash News; Getty Images/Frazer Harrison/Staff; Getty Images/Vince Bucci/Stringer; Getty Images/Vince Bucci/Stringer

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