Barbra Streisand Blasts Bradley Cooper’s ‘A Star Is Born’
Barbra Streisand has gone on the record to say that Bradley Cooper’s adaptation of A Star Is Born was “the wrong idea.” In 1976, Streisand appeared in Warner Bros.’ version of the classic story alongside Kris Kristofferson. It was the third filmed adaptation of the tale at that time, following George Cukor’s A Star Is Born starring Judy Garland.
In a Sunday appearance on Australian talk show, The Sunday Project (via Deadline), the 79-year-old star shared her criticism of Cooper’s adaptation. “I thought it was the wrong idea,” said Streisand. “Look, it was a big success. I can’t argue with success. But I don’t care so much about success as I do originality.”
Streisand remarked that the most recent iteration of A Star Is Born was supposed to star Will Smith and Beyonce, which she believed added a fresh spin on the story. “I thought… that’s interesting. You know, really make it different again — a different kind of music, integrated actors. I thought that was a great idea,” she explained. “So, I was surprised when I saw how alike it was to the version that I did in 1976.”
For the acclaimed actress and singer, reinventing Garland’s role from the 1954 film was her main focus. “When I did A Star Is Born ... Judy Garland was so great in it, I thought, ‘Oh my God, how am I going to do this?’” recalled Streisand. “‘I have to change it. I’ll become a guitar-playing singer-songwriter, and Kris Kristofferson is already a singer-songwriter, and we’ll change the story a bit.’”
So Streisand was surprised when Lady Gaga's approach to Ally was similar to Streisand's portrayal of Esther, since both characters are singer-songwriters. But it is worth mentioning that while Streisand’s 1976 adaptation is geared more towards rock music, Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga’s version has a distinct country-rock flair. To Streisand’s point, a version of A Star Is Born that explores a completely different genre of music such as hip hop would be exciting. Since there’s already four filmed versions of A Star Is Born, who’s to say we can’t have one more in the future?