Taraji P. Henson Channels Elizabeth Taylor on the Oscars Red Carpet

The actress went for classic Old Hollywood glamour

89th Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals
Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty

As Pharrell Williams told Ryan Seacrest on the Oscars red carpet, Taraji P. Henson is the definition of a “pluralist.” Whether it’s “tv, film, fashion, books” it seems there’s nothing the actress can’t achieve when she sets her mind to it. Which apparently also includes totally killing it on every red carpet.

Taraji told Seacrest that she, “love[s] when men pop color, it’s so easy to do black.” But while all the men in Hollywood may be playing it safe on the red carpet, Henson was doing anything but, using the opportunity to take a major risk in a deep purple velvet custom Alberta Ferretti gown.

Watch the PEOPLE & EW Red Carpet Live Oscars pre-show on Feb. 26 at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT on the People/Entertainment Weekly Network (PEN). Go to PEOPLE.com/PEN, or download the app on your favorite device. Then watch our Red Carpet Fashion Wrap-Up after the Oscars!

RELATED PHOTOS: The Best-Dressed Stars at the Oscars!

The Academy Awards kicks off live on ABC on Sunday, Feb. 26, with a 7 p.m. ET preshow and 8:30 p.m. ceremony. See all the Oscar nominees and get your own ballot here!

For the biggest award show of the year, the actress chose a deceptively simple gown, channeling Old Hollywood glamour à la Elizabeth Taylor, complete with her own “Diamonds Are Forever” moment. Her Feretti dress featured an off-the-shoulder neckline with plenty of décolletage, a curve-hugging bodice, and a thigh-high slit for an extra dose of sex appeal. She complimented the look with a simple box clutch, black strappy shoes, and a mega-carat diamond necklace from the Nirav Modi Luminance collection as well as their Evergreen Emerald Ring.

What do you think of her Oscar look?

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