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Today's Page Six throws a harsh light on a profound tragedy that struck the Golden Globes, one that had seemingly escaped notice until now:

IT doesn't sound possible, but Chanel managed to turn Reese Witherspoon into a fashion victim at the Golden Globes.

Witherspoon, who won Best Actress for "Walk the Line," wore a white-and-silver "vintage" Chanel dress - only to find out it was a mere 3 years old and that Kirsten Dunst wore the same frock to Globes after-parties back in 2003. Whoops!

Witherspoon's rep, Nancy Ryder, is said to be so angry at Chanel for giving her a recently recycled gown that she's vowing not to accept anything from Chanel again - or let her other clients, including Jennifer Lopez and Renée Zellweger, wear anything from the French couture house.

Ryder said, "Reese was told the dress was vintage. It was not. I'm not angry - just a little disappointed, but the big deal is Reese won the Golden Globe."

Witherspoon's publicist is putting on her happy face for the media by reducing her public Flack Threat Level from "angry" to "a little disappointed" over Chanel's skullduggery, but those inside Hollywood's inner circles know how truly appalling it is to drape this year's Oscar frontrunner in the same rags as noted frumpster Kirsten Dunst...[audible gasp, with optional fainting] from three years ago! Just so we all understand the stakes, a smaller transgression would've entailed a Chanel employee kidnapping one of Witherspoon's children from their Globes babysitter, offering it for sale on a dirty blanket in downtown LA, then texting the actress the evil plans in the middle of her acceptance speech.

Chanel really only has two options following this PR disaster: Burn its headquarters to the ground in contrition, or offer to dress Witherspoon in an Oscar gown woven from the hair of Guatemalan infants and bedazzled with two-carat diamonds—and not a knock-off of the one Sharon Stone wore in 1995.