Helming a movie with live original music was quite the undertaking for Bradley Cooper's directorial debut, A Star is Born. With the vocal powerhouse/breakout actress Lady Gaga by his side, the pair tell an age-old love story in effortless harmony. According to director of photography Matthew Libatique, A Star is Born filmed a lot more footage than moviegoers were treated to, and an extended cut is in the works. In his words:
I think they're actually doing a new cut, a director's cut, and putting some stuff back in. I think there's always the concern about length, but, for him, I think it was mostly the concern about, 'When am I stepping outside the forward narrative of this love story, and when am I stepping outside the idea that you have one character ascending, another descending.' I think that's all he was doing when doing different cuts, is trying to find that soul.
In an interview with The Film Stage, Matthew Libatique explained how A Star is Born evolved throughout post-production with quite a few different cuts before reaching its theatrical release, running at about 2 hours and 16 minutes.
Because the film involved both dialogue and music sequences, they filmed a lot more movie then what audiences witnessed upon its release. In service of telling the core love story between Jackson Maine and Ally, Bradley Cooper ended up shaving it down to the movie's essence.
News of a director's cut has not been confirmed by Warner Bros., but considering the high-acclaim and box office records A Star is Born is receiving, this is a great idea for fans to experience the film in a new way. It could perhaps include some longer music sequences, or the addition of scenes previously cut out to keep the movie at a marketable length. The film had 10 major music sequences but a total of 19 songs on the soundtrack, including an extended version of the film's incredible closer "I'll Never Love Again."
A Star is Born is also a Oscars frontrunner for quite a few key awards this year including Best Picture, Lady Gaga for Best Actress, Bradley Cooper for Best Actor and Sam Elliott as Best Supporting Actor. Once award season dies down and people are ready to revisit the much buzzed-about romantic drama, a home release including a director's cut would fare quite well and give fans something new from the movie to look forward to.
One of the most enticing qualities of A Star is Born was getting to see Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper showcase an incredible musical and acting talent that they've never quite presented before. Having an encore for A Star is Born with additional sequences would deepen and enhance the film. For now the stunning theatrical cut is currently playing in theaters.