A Star is Born – A New Classic Again
This weekend we experienced the latest version of A Star is Born, this one starring Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga. The critical acclaim is well deserved, and it looks like it will be a huge box office success. We love the movie – Lady Gaga is wonderful in first acting role, and of course, as always, her singing takes you to new heights. And Bradley Cooper produced and brilliantly plays the lead male role and the man can sing too. He oozes sex appeal and their chemistry is palpable. And now we are obsessed with the story and previous three versions, and we want to see them all!
The first, a drama, was 1937, with Janet Gaynor and Fredric March; the next one, a musical in 1954, stars Judy Garland and James Mason; the one in 1976, stars Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson; and the latest, with Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga.
Here’s the rundown on all four version and how you can see them.
The original 1937 version of a A Star Is Born…
… stars Janet Gaynor (in her only Technicolor film) as an aspiring Hollywood actress, and Fredric March (in his Technicolor debut) as a fading movie star who helps launch her career. It was produced by David O. Selznick, directed by William A. Wellmanfrom, with a script by Wellman, Robert Carson, Dorothy Parker, and Alan Campbell. It was nominated for 10 award and Wellman won for original story. Frank S. Nugent of The New York Times called the film “one of the year’s best shows” The full movie is available for FREE on YouTube or Rent it on Amazon.
A Star is Born 1954 is the first musical version
Written by Moss Hart, starring Judy Garland and James Mason, and directed by George Cukor. Garland and Mason were both nominated for academy awards. This version was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.” It was critical acclaimed and a box office hit. Rent it on Amazon.
A Star is Born 1976
Another musical version, stars Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson. Produced by Streisand and Jon Peters, directed by George Cukor, Frank Pierson. Won one Oscar for best song, “Evergreen”. The critics hated it, but it was a box office success. Rent it on Amazon.
A Star is Born 2018
Just wow. We loved this version as have the critics and the audiences. Lady Gaga is brilliant in her first acting role, and Bradley Cooper is a genius in his first directing role and is amazing in his role. The music is terrific too. Interesting, Jon Peters is also one of the producers. See in the theater.
What’s your favorite version?