A cockroach on the red carpet turned out to be a Met Gala highlight

An unlikely guest had a red carpet moment at the 2023 Met Gala, amongst a number of glamorous stars.

A cockroach was spotted crawling along the steps of the Metropolitan Museum of Art on Monday night (1 May) just before Rihanna and A$AP Rocky made their appearance.

The insect was papped on the carpet by photographer Kevin Mazur, who posed with his picture of the cockroach for Variety magazine’s Twitter feed.

It quickly became a sensation on social media, with many declaring that the cockroach was the “moment” of the night, instead of the slew of celebrities dressed in elaborate outfits in honour of the Met Gala theme.

This year, the fundraiser’s theme is based on the Costume Institute’s spring show “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty”. It pays homage to the late German fashion designer’s work.

Fans of the cockroach celebrated its presence on the red carpet, despite cockroaches often plaguing the streets of New York City. One person tweeted: “He’s there to make sure you never forget that this is in New York.”

Others were concerned about whether the insect had paid its way to be at the Met Gala.

“Did the cockroach pay the US$50k?” a viewer asked, referring to the price of a ticket for fashion’s biggest annual event.

Variety later reported that the insect’s brief moment in the spotlight had come to an abrupt end – much like the Met Gala livestream.

“It is with deep sadness that we must report the Met Gala cockroach was stepped on. RIP,” it tweeted.

Viewers shared the post on social media to collectively mourn the death of the insect.

One person said it was an “absolute tragedy” that the cockroach had died, while another added: “Think this is the most devastating news I’ve ever heard (I woke up half an hour ago).”

A third lamented: “She was the icon that never was…”

Aside from the cockroach, Rihanna and A$AP, the Met Gala was attended by a host of celebrities from across entertainment industries, including Kim Kardashian, Kylie and Kendall Jenner, Anne Hathaway, Doja Cat, Florence Pugh, Jared Leto, Ice Spice, and more.

Anna Wintour, artistic director of Condé Nast and global editorial director of Vogue, also appeared at the event alongside actor Bill Nighy, seemingly confirming that they are in a relationship.

The fashion giant, who has been in charge of the Met Gala since 1995, first sparked rumours that she and Nighy were seeing one another romantically in December 2022, when they were spotted at the New York screening for the actor’s film Living.