Actress Natalie Portman and designer John Galliano attend the Dior...

Actress Natalie Portman and designer John Galliano attend the Dior celebration of the reopening of its 57th Street Boutique cocktail party at LVMH Tower Magic Room in Manhattan. (Dec. 8, 2010) Credit: WireImage

Natalie Portman, front-runner to win the best actress Oscar Sunday night, may be having a fashion meltdown. The pregnant Portman, 29, who appears in ads for Miss Dior Cherie fragrance, was widely believed to have chosen a Dior gown for the Oscar red carpet.

So why the trouble? John Galliano, 50, the flamboyant designer at Dior, was detained by police Thursday night after a couple said he assaulted them and made anti-Semitic remarks in a Paris bar.

Though the British designer was questioned and released after the incident, the company swiftly suspended him. In a statement, chief executive Sidney Toledano said Friday "The House of Dior confirms, with the greatest firmness, its policy of zero tolerance for any anti-Semitic or racist comments." Galliano is out until authorities conclude their investigation. The designer's lawyer vigorously denied wrongdoing.

This all happened a week before Galliano was scheduled to show two collections at Paris Fashion Week, Dior and his own signature line.

Whether those shows go on or not, the Jewish star who grew up on Long Island and graduated from Syosset High School has a more immediate problem. Calls and e-mails to the company and Portman's publicist were not returned, though one public relations source said Dior "never confirms celebrity dressing before an event."

So what's a pregnant Oscar contender to do? "It's a sticky wicket," said Robert Verdi, the celebrity stylist. "While couture designer maternity dresses don't grow on trees, it's not uncommon for a star of Natalie's caliber to have a backup dress or two."

With wire reports

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