Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta has already made a splash with her acting career with appearance in varied projects, including Ryan Murphy‘s American Horror Story: Hotel, American Horror Story: Roanoke, and Robert Rodriguez‘s Machete Kills (2013) but her latest project takes her into new territory. She plays the lead in A Star Is Born, a film that has already received so much buzz, but now Warner Bros. seems to be going for a different sort of buzz: Awards buzz. The studio moved A Star Is Born‘s release from May 18 to a release date to October 5, that is the start of the special time of year when potential awards contenders grab the most attention. And, the buzz is that it is very good.
A Star Is Born is directed by Bradley Cooper and it stars Cooper, Lady Gaga, Sam Elliott, Andrew Dice Clay, and Dave Chappelle.
This A Star Is Born marks the third English remake of the original 1937 film starring Janet Gaynor and Frederic March, which was adapted for a 1954 musical starring Judy Garland and James Mason, and the 1976 rock musical version starring Barbra Streisand with an afro and a shirtless Kris Kristofferson.
The 1937 version was produced by David O. Selznick, and directed by William Wellman from a screenplay by Wellman, Dorothy Parker and Parker’s gay husband Alan Campbell. It is Gaynor’s only Technicolor film. It is the tale of an aspiring Hollywood actress, and the fading movie star who helps launch her career.
A Star Is Born, 1954 style, features musical numbers for Garland. It has many gay connections: It was written by closet case Moss Hart and was directed by George Cukor. Garland had not made a film since she had negotiated release from her MGM contract in 1950, and the movie was promoted as her big comeback. Her performance was nominated for an Academy Award. NBC, which was televising the ceremony, sent a film crew to the hospital room where she had just giving birth to her son Joey to carry her acceptance speech live if she won. She was expected to win that night, but she lost to Grace Kelly for The Country Girl.
The Streisand version’s soundtrack album reached Number One on the pop charts and sold 20 million copies worldwide. Its big ballad Evergreen (Love Theme from A Star Is Born), written by Streisand and Paul Williams, became the biggest hit of Streisand’s career, spending three weeks at Number One and won an Oscar.
Streisand’s character’s (Esther Hoffman Howard) clothing was straight out of Streisand’s own closet. The actual film credit reads: “Miss Streisand’s clothes from… her closet.”