Will ''Chicago'' dance away with the Oscar for Best Picture? Will Jack Nicholson scoop up his third Best Actor trophy? And, more importantly, will Nicole Kidman dare the sort of fashion chutzpah that had her pairing a lavender gown with (gasp!) ebony stilettos? Ah yes, the Golden Globe Awards -- not only do they foreshadow likely Oscar nominees, they are the best indicator of red-carpet trends come March 23. And if the Jan. 19 Globes were any indication, stars (Lara Flynn Boyle notwithstanding) will be playing it safer than Tom Hanks' straightlaced FBI man in ''Catch Me if You Can.''
''You have to take into [consideration] who's nominated,'' says stylist Deborah Waknin, whose clients include Jennifer Garner and Marg Helgenberger. ''It might be a little conservative this year -- for one thing you've got a very pregnant woman [Catherine Zeta-Jones] and a couple of veterans [Meryl Streep and Kathy Bates].''
Conservative, but not boring, says Elie Saab, the designer behind Halle Berry's showstopping frock at last year's Academy Awards: ''This year's Oscars will be...very feminine, like old-time movies.'' Adds hairstylist Charles Worthington: ''Demonstrating the essence of simple Hollywood glamour, we didn't see a lot of loose, flowing hair.''
We did see very classic, elegant gowns paired with sleek hair and statement accessories. What other Oscar predictions can we glean from the Golden Globes? We polled some of fashion's tastemakers.
SHORT Bucking black-tie traditions, a couple of fashion mavericks opted for the season's hottest trend, the mini. Cameron Diaz sported a daringly short, sleeveless Chanel, ''24'''s Elisha Cuthbert wore a frothy, '80s-flavored creation by Collette Dinnigan, and Maggie Gyllenhaal channeled her inner girl in a lacy white Chanel frock (smartly accessorized with grown-up pumps and a chic updo). Granted, the Oscars tend to be more formal, but ''based on what the New York designers are producing, there might be one or two who go short,'' says Waknin. Fingers crossed, tutus will not be included.
COLOR One surprise -- given haute couture's current emphasis on color -- was how many women opted for black, making the bolder choices of Helgenberger (in chartreuse John Galliano), Salma Hayek (in crimson Narciso Rodriguez), Queen Latifah (in ice-blue Escada), and Kate Hudson and Cate Blanchett (both in multicolored Valentino) even more eye-catching. ''There will be more color [at the Oscars],'' predicts Saab. That said, black can still be stunning, as in Reneé Zellweger's vintage Valentino.
ACCESSORIES Nicole Kidman and Julianne Moore (both wearing Fred Leighton), and Kim Cattrall (in Lorraine Schwartz) were among the ladies modeling lobe-stretching ear candy. ''They really light up the face,'' says Andrea Hansen, marketing director for H. Stern jewelry. Queen Latifah was living large as well, with a diamond choker by DeBeers. ''I thought people were going to get tired of the largesse of the style,'' says Hansen, ''[but] I'm inclined to believe that it's here to stay.''