Gisele Bündchen Recalls Attending Oscars With Leonardo DiCaprio and the Runway Outfit That Made Her Cry
By Samantha Schnurr
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From the runway to the Oscars red carpet, Gisele Bündchen has memories to last a lifetime. In a newly released video for British Vogue, the 41-year-old supermodel revisited many milestones -- and the outfits she wore to go with them -- including the night she accompanied then-boyfriend Leonardo DiCaprio to the 2005 Academy Awards.
At the time, the actor had been nominated for Best Actor for his performance in The Aviator and Bündchen, sporting an embellished strapless dress designed by John Galliano for Dior, was at his side as they posed along the red carpet.
"When you go to a place like the Oscars, there’s, like, a lot of people and everyone is screaming," she described. "I remember just feeling a bit, like, squeezing his hand and being, like, 'OK, I’m here.'"
While the two have since gone their separate ways -- Bündchen married Tom Brady four years later -- the memory of that event is a cherished one. "It was nice to experience that once in a lifetime," she said, "and I love that dress."
By that point, Bündchen was far from the unknown model she had been in 1998 when she walked the Alexander McQueen runway for the first time. While she's since called it her first "big break," it was not without tears.
"This was one of the most traumatizing moments," she said when presented with a photo of herself on the runway, donning a see-through metallic string top with her breasts visible. As the star recalled, she had gotten picked for the show after dozens of unsuccessful castings in the midst of the "heroin chic" era. Knowing limited English, the Brazilian model had not had a fitting beforehand and learned at the show that she would have to wear this look. The then-teenager started crying, but had to stop for the sake of the feathers glued to her lashes.
"I was walking the whole time thinking, 'Oh my God, I hope my dad never sees this picture,'" she remembered. "... All I wanted to do was leave.'"
In her memoir, Lessons, she also recalled a makeup artist painting a top on her body after she was tasked with modeling just a skirt as one of the looks in the show. "If Val [the makeup artist] hadn't shown up just then," she wrote, "I seriously doubt I could have walked the runway."
More than 20 years later, Bündchen told British Vogue, "It's one of those things that make you stronger."