Fashion misfits in strange places -- We look at why Marilyn Manson and Carmen Electra got so much attention at the annual Costume Institute ball

IS IT JUST US… Or did repeat style offenders nearly rival fashion’s elite for visibility at the annual Costume Institute ball, which took place May 2 in NYC? Sure, the gala in honor of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Chanel exhibit featured the usual glamour-girl suspects: Naomi Watts, Jessica Simpson (wearing Michael Kors), and Jennifer Connelly, alongside Chanel spokesperson Nicole Kidman, who cochaired the event with Vogue editor Anna Wintour. But how did Lil’ Kim, Marilyn Manson, and Carmen Electra land on the VIP list for a party that is traditionally dominated by socialites and couture royalty? Coco, we feel your pain.

VIVE LA PARIS Spoiler, schmoiler. Producer Joel Silver was so confident that his slasher flick House of Wax would do well he began advertising the grisly fate of costar Paris Hilton on a T-shirt three weeks before the movie’s May 6 release. The limited-edition ”See Paris Die” tees, which retail for $48 at trendy L.A. boutique Kitson, sold out in three hours and are currently on back order — much to the pleasure of Wax distributors Warner Bros., Kitson owner Fraser Ross, and Hilton. ”Obviously, her mother doesn’t like it,” says Ross. ”Paris just felt it was too bad the shirts didn’t have the film’s opening date on the backs.”