BEVERLY HILLS (Reuters) - A host of female stars have turned out to celebrate the Elle "Women in Hollywood" awards in Beverly Hills as the U.S. election, which could provide the United States with its first female president, draws near.

Actresses Felicity Jones and Lupita Nyong'o as well as "Twilight" co-stars Kristen Stewart and Dakota Fanning hit the red carpet on Monday for the annual awards that celebrate the contribution of women to the film industry.

Many of the actresses touched on the U.S. election, just two weeks away, which could see Hillary Clinton become America's first female president.

"I think the power and the presence of America on the international stage in the world it will really be sending an amazing message if there is a female president," said British actress Helen Mirren.

"I've been to these events before and it is a lot of fun to get women together to tell their stories ... especially now during this election process when women have had some dirt kicked on them," said Oscar winner Kathy Bates, alluding to the rhetoric that has marked the political campaign.

"Enchanted" actress Amy Adams was also among the actresses honored by Elle and she struck a forward-looking note.

"There is always more work to be done, but I choose to focus on the positive," said Adams.

"There are so many wonderful women who are making great strides to create change and I think we need to focus on that."

(Reporting by Reuters Television; Writing by Adela Suliman; Editing by Patrick Johnston and Tom Heneghan)