‘A Star is Born’ Gets Bradley Cooper’s Attention

Time-tested story of experience could be right for directorial debut

You know Hollywood can’t keep its hands off a good storyline.

So A Star is Born has been on everybody’s radar for a remake for years.

You may recall the plot: an aging star takes a newbie talent on his wing and guides her to stardom until they find love and all the complications that entails.

In fact, when and if this comes to the big screen again, it will be version No. 34. The Hollywood Reporter on Tuesday offered this neat rundown by reporters Rebecca Ford and Borys Kit.

The original from 1937, starring Janet Gaynor and Fredric March and directed by William A. Wellman, “centers on a movie star who helps an aspiring young actress find fame, even as age and alcoholism send his own career into a downward spiral. It earned eight Academy Award nominations.”

“The first remake came out in 1954 and starred Judy Garland and James Mason. It was nominated for a slew of awards, and Garland and Mason won best actress and actor Golden Globes for their work.”

“The second remake, starring Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson, was directed by Frank Pierson. It won five Golden Globe Awards including best motion picture –musical/comedy, as well as the Academy Award for best original song for “Evergreen.

Warner Bros., in fact, has been working on this next one since 2011, the story says, with Clint Eastwood signed on to direct.

But its in the news now because Eastwood’s star in last year’s hit “American Sniper” may take over as the director instead.

Yes, Bradley Cooper is in talks to make his directorial debut with the remake of the famous musical.

Wednesday, reporter Robert Yaniz Jr. speculated for Screen Rant what that might mean for that famous story.

“With three consecutive Oscar nominations under his belt, Cooper has certainly demonstrated his skill in front of the camera. So it’s not hard to picture him taking on the male lead himself. Many big names – Tom Cruise, Christian Bale, Robert Downey Jr. and Will Smith among them – have reportedly been in contention for the part in the past,” Yaniz Jr. writes.

“If the remake takes A Star Is Born back to its Hollywood roots, then it would sense for Cooper – a bonafide A-lister – to share the screen with the movie’s leading lady. On the other hand, perhaps the first-time director will prefer to focus solely on crafting the best feature possible, instead.”

As for me, since I spotted the trailer for Cameron Crowe’s upcoming comedy/drama/romance combo Aloha that opens May 29, I can’t wait to see Cooper starring alongside Emma Stone and Rachel McAdams.

Play Powerball or take acting lessons?

So I’d say the top 1 percent of the top 1 percent still has it good.

Reporter Joseph Baxter of Cinema Blend came out with a story Wednesday about actors who can pull down $20 million for a film.

Harder times, yes. Terrible times, no.

Baxter writes: “The movie business is in kind of a ‘best of times, worst of times’ state. While big-budget bonanza tentpoles are practically printing money, the collective state of the film industry is looking at a slow but inevitable sea change. That is not to say that Hollywood has hit its nadir. In fact, a recent survey has revealed that studios are still willing pay top dollar for a certain handful of stars, putting them into the esteemed $20 million club of single film salaries.”

A survey given to producers allowed the A-plus list to be whittled down to these six, according to the Hollywood Reporter:

Leonardo DiCaprio

Leonardo DiCaprio $25 million
Sandra Bullock $20 million
Matt Damon $20 million
Robert Downey Jr. $20 million
Denzel Washington $20 million
Angelina Jolie $15 million to $20 million

Baxter added that none of these happy half-dozen has been involved in a movie that in the top 20 so far in 2015.

“While that will surely change as the year progresses when the big franchises come into the picture, it does leave one to wonder how much longer Hollywood execs will continue to justify these exorbitant paydays when money is being made without them,” Baxter writes.

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