Barbra Streisand Just Called Out Lady Gaga's "A Star Is Born" for This Reason
"I don't care so much about success as I do originality."
When the third remake of A Star Is Born was released in 2018, it was a huge box office hit and was nominated for eight Academy Awards, winning Best Original Song. When it was released, was also praised by Barbra Streisand, who starred in the second remake of A Star Is Born in 1976. (The previous versions premiered in 1937 and 1954.) But very recently, Streisand shared some more of her thoughts on the latest film, starring Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga, voicing an issue with how the movie turned out.
Speaking to Australia's The Sunday Project, Streisand said that she thought the new movie was going to have more "originality" and was hoping that a different genre of music would be showcased, along with a more diverse cast. This is something she had made mention of before, while complimenting other aspects of the movie, but she elaborated further in this new interview. Read on to see what Streisand didn't like about the hit remake.
Streisand wanted to make sure her version of the story stood out.
The 1937 original A Star Is Born stars Janet Gaynor and Fredric March and is about an up-and-coming actor, who makes it big with the help of a washed-up movie star. The 1954 version stars Judy Garland and James Mason and follows a similar plot, but is a musical about an aspiring singer.
For the 1976 movie, Streisand said that she wanted to be sure to switch things up. "When I did A Star Is Born, I thought Judy Garland was so great in it, I thought, 'Oh my god, how am I going to do this? I have to change it. I'll become a guitar-playing singer-songwriter and [co-star] Kris Kristofferson is already a singer-songwriter, and we'll change the story a bit,'" she explained to The Sunday Project.
She originally thought the 2018 movie would star Will Smith and Beyoncé.
Of course, the plot of A Star Is Born was going to remain the same, but Streisand said in this new interview that she thought the music would change—as it did with her version. And she was also under the impression that the fourth version would have non-white leads for the first time.
"At first, when I heard it was going to be done again, it was supposed to be Will Smith and Beyoncé," Streisand said. "And I thought, that's interesting. Really make it different again, different kind of music, integrated actors. I thought that was a great idea, so I was surprised when I saw how alike it was to the version that I did in 1976."
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She said that Cooper and Gaga's version "was the wrong idea."
The 2018 movie was directed and co-written by Cooper, who also starred opposite Lady Gaga. Streisand told The Sunday Project that she thought the movie "was the wrong idea." She added, "Hey, look, it was a big success, so I can't argue with success. But I don't care so much about success as I do originality."
The most recent A Star Is Born went through several different possible casts.
Years ago, Beyoncé was attached to be the lead in A Star Is Born, which was going to be directed by Clint Eastwood. But, as reported by Variety, in 2012, Beyoncé left the project due to scheduling conflicts and the start date for production not being set. At that time, her co-star wasn't confirmed, but Leonardo DiCaprio, Johnny Depp, Tom Cruise, Christian Bale, and Cooper himself were all rumored to be in the running.
There also could have been a movie that starred Will Smith and Jennifer Lopez. Lopez confirmed this in a 2018 interview with Extra, saying that the plans simply fell through. "Will and I talked about it, talked about developing the script. It just never… projects are like that," she said.
Streisand previously praised the 2018 movie… with some critique thrown in.
Streisand visited the set of Cooper and Gaga's A Star Is Born, and Cooper told Entertainment Weekly that she "gave us a blessing." In her own interview with Variety in 2018, Streisand said of what she saw on set, "It's good. I don't want to talk about it because I don't want to spook it. I can't believe that was 40-some years ago. I think he did a wonderful job with her."
Still, Streisand did mention Beyoncé again and the potential for the movie to go down a different path. "I thought when it was going to be done, it was going to be very different and have a multiracial cast, and the music was going to be rap," Streisand said. "But it's more like the movie I made."
The 79-year-old star also shared a similar comment with the New York Times, "I haven't seen it completed," she said in a 2018 interview. "Bradley [Cooper] did show me the opening. I was surprised by how similar it was to my version. I loved how he used the drag bar. I thought that was new and interesting. What I've seen of the film I really liked."