Lady Gaga did everything she could to prepare for the lead in A Star Is Born. The longtime fan of Judy Garland was taking on a role once played by her idol, so she spent months preparing, working with acting coach Susan Batson and memorizing her lines. But when she showed up on set to shoot her very first scene with co-star and director Bradley Cooper, things didn't go as smoothly as she'd hoped, the star revealed in a new interview with the Los Angeles Times. In fact, the actor only had to utter one line before Gaga completely broke down.
Having meticulously learned her lines for the scene, the Golden Globe winner was thrown when Bradley immediately went off script - and all she could do was repeat the same line over and over! “Finally, he said, ‘Are you OK?’ And then I started crying,” she explained. “Then I got that out of the way and then we did the scene. I had to let go of the words.”
The "Born This Way" singer had to let go of more than just the words to star in Bradley's directorial debut, which premieres at the Venice Film Festival on Friday (Aug. 31). She also had to let go of her insecurities about her looks, and the Silver Linings Playbook star made that absolutely clear when he forced her to remove all her makeup with a wipe before a screen test in 2016.
“It put me right in the place I needed to be, because when my character talks about how ugly she feels — that was real,” the star, born Stefani Germanotta, recalls. “I’m so insecure. I like to preach, but I don’t always practice what I preach.”
Gaga also revealed that she's found new ways of feeling beautiful that have nothing to do with her appearance and everything to do with her fans. “When I see or hear from them that the music that I’ve made has changed their life in some way, that’s what makes me feel beautiful." Far more than having people tell her she looked gorgeous in the film, the American Horror Story actress wants it to touch her fans. "I want them to say, ‘I saw that movie and I cried my eyes out and I learned something about myself.’”
The film sees the 32-year-old take on the role of struggling musician Ally, who falls in love with and finds a mentor in Bradley's Jackson Maine, a well-established rocker. But as her star rises, her new partner has to face his demons and struggles with addiction for them both come out on top.
Despite a rocky start, over time the tenacious star blew everyone away, most of all her co-star. “Her learning curve was insane, just from the first day to the second day,” Bradley revealed. “Everybody already knows that she’s got a God-given talent as a singer, and she was able to utilize that plutonium to act." He added that he feels lucky to be part of her journey as an actress.The two will touch down in Toronto next week to premiere A Star Is Born at TIFF on Sept. 9 at Roy Thompson Hall.