A Star Is Born: Is Lady Gaga's film debut worthy of an Oscar?

A Star Is Born: Is Lady Gaga's film debut worthy of an Oscar?


Text: Yimin Huang

Editor: Aravin Sandran

Image: Getty Images

Lady Gaga's film debut in A Star Is Born sets off Oscar hype after its premiere at the Venice Film Festival

Lady Gaga knows how to play her cards right, and she certainly didn't hold back for her red carpet appearance for the premiere of A Star Is Born at the 75th Venice Film Festival. She stepped out in a bubblegum-pink Valentino couture dress with lush plumage that would make Sesame Street's Yellow Bird jealous. The cameras went wild and the crowd gasped with oohs and aahs.

Not only did she receive attention for her dress, her debut film performance received rave reviews from film critics after the premiere, and an Oscar buzz ensued. In A Star Is Born, Gaga plays Ally, a young and insecure singer. She sings in bars but secretly writes her own music. "Almost every single person has told me that they like the way I sound, but they didn't like the way I looked", she says to Jackson Maine, a veteran musician played by the dashing Bradley Cooper who is also the film's director. Falling in love with her disarming ways, Maine coaxes her into the spotlight. As Ally's career blooms, their love struggles to keep up and Maine descents into alcoholism.

Gaga is not the first starlet to grace this role. Hollywood luminaries Janet Gaynor and Judy Garland were both nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role at the Oscars for their renditions in 1937 and 1954 respectively while songstress Barbara Streisand was nominated for Best Music, Original Song in 1976. 

 The film garnered headlines back in 2012 when Beyoncé was rumoured to be its female lead and Clint Eastwood was slated to be its director. However, when both exited the production, the film landed into the laps of Gaga and Cooper.

Though the film does not mirror her claim to fame as a singer, Gaga's own road to stardom was not smooth sailing. Initially put down by naysayers, her growing presence was intimidating to her exes and became one of the reasons for her break-ups in the past. This might have perhaps helped Gaga relate to and embody her role with more vulnerability and sensitivity. Gaga has since moved on from her hyped estranged engagement with actor Taylor Kinney. She is currently engaged to talent agent Christian Carino, who was spotted with her at the film festival in Venice.

The film's soundtrack is scheduled to be released on 5 October, becoming Gaga's latest musical offering to date.

A Star Is Born will be released on 4 October at all major cinemas in Singapore.

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