A chat with the man who stepped on – and ripped – Chloe Sevigny’s dress at the Golden Globe Awards
When Big Love star Chloe Sevigny’s name was called as the winner of the Golden Globe Award for outstanding supporting actress in a television role, she did not make it up to the stage inside the Beverly Hilton Hotel unscathed – well, at least her Valentino dress didn’t.
As she began her speech, she stopped and said to an off-camera escort: “I can’t believe you just ripped my dress!”
Backstage she told the press: “I feel amazing in it. Unfortunately, the gentlemen escorting me up to the stage when I won this award stepped on it as he was walking and away tore it, so now it’s slightly more tattered. I think it’s going to make it through at least to the party.”
I talked to the poor guy who did the stepping and the accidental ripping. He’s theater producer Joe Everett Michaels who was mortified by the incident that resulted in his being on Access Hollywood, The Insider and Extra in recent days.
Joe, it should be noted, had been a Globe escort for female winners for three years and on Sunday, successfully helped Sandra Bullock, Julianna Margulies, Drew Barrymore and cast members from Glee and Avatar onto the stage without incident.
Only Sevigny’s long train proved to be a problem. He tells Greg In Hollywood, in his own words, exactly what happened:
“There’s two of us who basically escort the female winners onto the stage. I greeted [Chloe] and put my arm out. They are always in a state of shock and grab onto you tight. I say ‘Congratulations’ and walk them up and get off as soon as possible. When I got her up there, I lifted my hand off to have her release and let go and as she pulled away, I went to the left and she was going right. The train of the extraordinarily beautiful dress she was wearing got caught under my foot and as I started to walk, I heard it rip. It was really loud.”
“My natural instinct was to stop and turn around and say, ‘Are you okay?’ But in my head I said, ‘This is live TV. This is the Golden Globes and you can’t do what is instinctual.” So, I just walked off the stage. I was shaken up. I was like, ‘Oh my God, I just ripped her dress.’”
“About two commercial breaks late, when [Chloe] was done with press, when she was back at her table with Jeanne Tripplehorn, I walked up and said, ‘Excuse me, I’m extremely sorry about stepping on your dress. I apologize. I am very, very sorry. Unfortunately my foot got caught on your train and I truly apologize.” [Chloe] said she had a bad feeling something like this was going to happen, that she was going to fall down. Jeanne gave me a big hug and said, ‘Don’t worry about it.’”
At that point, Joe was unaware that Chloe had even said anything about the ripped dress in her speech or to the press backstage.
“I didn’t really know any of that had been said until I was backstage and one of the make-up women said, ‘Oh my God, she really ripped you one!’ When I got home and watched the show on TiVo, then I saw what she said and I was like, ‘Wow.’ Then of course [on Monday] first thing in the morning, my phone was blowing up with calls and texts. I thought, ‘Really? All this?”
“It was an accident. It was her big moment and I guess I kind of spoiled it for a second. I certainly didn’t mean to.”
Here is video of “the incident.”
Once the hoopla dies down, the 41-year-old former actor, who is openly gay, will get back to focusing on his work. Among the plays he has produced in Los Angeles are a Mommie Queerest and a Facts of Life parody. Most recently, he produced Falling Upward at the El Portal Theater in North Hollywood which may be headed off-Broadway.
He also participated in a reality series called Boystown that has been completed and not yet aired. He hopes it does someday soon because he is very candid in it: “I talked about coming out, getting beat up as a kid and now I have a production company and am having dreams fulfiled. I want to give hopes to some kid somewhere who didn’t have anybody to look up to.”
As for the Globes, despite what happened with Chloe Sevigny, “I’d love to do it again. I really enjoy it.”