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Over the weekend at the Venice Film Festival, Lady Gaga's much-anticipated first leading film role and Bradley Cooper's directorial debut, A Star is Born, was shown to its first audience ahead of its October release. While a majority of critics and audiences gushed after seeing the film, about halfway into the premiere, the theater was electrified... with actual lightning. During the screening, the theater was struck, causing a projector bulb to blow out, adding a 15 minute intermission to the premiere as technicians rushed to fix the problem and let the show go on.
According to Variety, during the incident, which was set off by a heavy rainstorm effecting the area, Lady Gaga was seen laughing and blowing kisses out into the audience as the theater waited for the technical difficulty to be fixed. A Star is Born did resume, much to the delight of the crowd, as the film has received some rather high praise since it premiered. The first screening was certainly a memorable evening for both the stars and those in the audience who weren't expecting the cosmic forces from above to make an appearance during the presentation.
A Star is Born has Lady Gaga, known for incredible transformations and powerhouse vocals, retell a Hollywood classic once told by the likes of Judy Garland and Barbara Streisand, each remakes of the 1937 original of the same name. This film follows Bradley Cooper, who also directed and has writing credits, as Jackson Maine a successful musician who discovers Ally (played by Gaga) and gives her the courage to get on stage. The pair spark a romance while on the road together as Ally rises to fame, though Jackson's alcoholism starts to come out of the shadows.
While Lady Gaga and theatricality has always mixed well together, the singer only started showing off her acting chops as Bertha in Sin City: A Dame to Kill For and the Countess on American Horror Story: Hotel, the latter of which had her taking home a Golden Globe in 2016. A Star is Born marks her first go at being a leading lady, with her strong vocal skills also pivotal to her character. The project has been in development for quite some time, with Beyoncé (as Ally) and Clint Eastwood (as director) previously attached. Bradley Cooper then stepped up three years ago as both director and lead. While Warner Bros took some convincing to put Lady Gaga at the forefront, the actress auditioned for the role in front of Cooper, who wiped off her makeup during it in hopes to get the women behind larger-than-life pop star as his star.
Whether the strike of lightning at the Venice Film Festival was an elaborate blessing or cautionary tale about the success of the fourth A Star is Born film is for you to decide as it storms into theaters on October 5.