People Staff
September 23, 1996 12:00 PM

WE WILL NOT BE OUTDONE BY THE OSCARS!” VOWED MAD About You regular Leila Kenzle as she arrived at the Pasadena (Calif.) Civic Auditorium for the 48th annual Emmy Awards. “The glamor quotient is extremely high tonight.” Unfortunately, so was the Sept. 8 temperature, which hovered in the 90s and managed to put TV’s biggest names in a lather. “I’m dying—and dabbing,” said NYPD Blue‘s Sharon Lawrence, clad in a gold Chanel gown, wiping her brow with a napkin. Just ahead on the red carpet, Ellen DeGeneres accessorized her navy Richard Tyler pantsuit with a small, battery-powered fan. “I’m very, very hot,” she groaned. “I can’t wait to go home and put on pajamas.”

Once indoors, though, the stars kept their cool with winners and losers alike displaying an abundance of old-fashioned elegance. The men stuck to basic black, while the women shimmered in slinky dresses (Seinfeld‘s Julia Louis-Dreyfus in a clingy Armani), pin-curls (The X-Files‘s Gillian Anderson) and blindingly big baubles (borrowed, of course). “There’s a burly man waiting for me outside,” said Caroline in the City‘s Lea Thompson of the bodyguard. who was hired to protect her Van Cleef & Arpels diamonds, valued at $300,000. But despite the Oscar-size élan, restraint prevailed when it came to time: The event clocked in right on schedule at a mere three hours. Even at many of the after-show soirees, celebs cut out early after sipping champagne and chowing down on salmon. “I held up really well,” said a relieved James McDaniel of NYPD Blue at night’s end. “No fanny fatigue at all.”

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