One of the most eagerly awaited pictures has debuted at Venice today with A Star Is Born. The film is the third remake of a tale that began onscreen over 80 years ago. The 1937 version starred Janet Gaynor and Fredric March. The 1954 Star featured Judy Garland and James Mason. The 1976 version featured Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson. All three of them received multiple Oscar nominations. None of them were featured in the Best Picture race.
That is probably about to change. The 2018 Star is directed, co-written, and starring Bradley Cooper in his debut behind the camera. His acting counterpart is Lady Gaga. Early reviews have praised both of their performances and it appears very likely both will be honored in their respective lead acting races. This would obviously be Gaga’s first nomination and Cooper’s fourth after Silver Linings Playbook, American Hustle, and American Sniper. Cooper may well find himself honored for his direction and Adapted Screenplay alongside Eric Roth and Will Fetters.
As for supporting players, the Academy may take notice of Sam Elliot’s work as Cooper’s older brother. Critics have also pointed out the performance of Rafi Gavron as the manager of Cooper’s troubled music superstar character.
Several down the line categories could in the mix including Cinematography, Editing, both Sound races, and Gaga’s original songs that are expected to be part of the soundtrack.
Bottom line: Another contender was born today in Venice – one with serious star power.
A Star Is Born opens domestically on October 5. My Oscar Watch posts will continue…