Clint Eastwood

Clint Eastwood Felt Beyoncé Could Be the Next Ella Fitzgerald After ‘A Star Is Born’

Although Beyoncé never officially worked with Clint Eastwood in ‘A Star Is Born’, Eastwood was very much looking forward to collaborating with the singer.

Beyoncé almost teamed up with prolific filmmaker Clint Eastwood for his own take on A Star Is Born. The veteran actor had a lot of praise for the Grammy-winner, so much so that he compared her to another well-known musician.

Beyoncé was initially cast in Lady Gaga’s role for ‘A Star Is Born’

Beyonce accepting the Best Rap Song award for 'Savage' on stage while wearing a black dress.
Beyonce | Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Hollywood had been trying to develop another A Star Is Born remake for years before Cooper’s version. Several actors hoped to attach themselves to the project, but for the longest time plans kept fizzling out. Some of those stars included Jennifer Lopez and Will Smith, who only went as far as discussing the script, before plans changed.

A modern Star Is Born seemed to finally be on the verge of happening after Eastwood was tapped to direct. The veteran filmmaker confirmed that Beyoncé would lead the movie, which he was more than excited about given the singer’s ability. He even compared her to another famous singer who made headlines during a bygone era.

“She asked if she could write stuff for the movie, I said yes, great. But I also told her I would make one or two things very classical. Still classicism. But I don’t want Beyoncé to be too classic! She has a superb voice,” Eastwood once said according to The Grape Juice. “She could become a new Sarah Vaughan or the next Ella Fitzgerald. She has the same class. I don’t know if she knows their music, but I intend to do a good education for the movie!”

Fitzgerald was a fellow Grammy winner who took over the genre of Jazz in the 30s and 40s. So putting Beyoncé in the same company as Fitzgerald meant that Eastwood held the Dreamgirls star in high regard.

How Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga ended up replacing Clint Eastwood and Beyoncé

Eastwood and Beyoncé’s A Star Is Born was never meant to be in the end. In a 2018 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the film’s producer Bill Gerber confided that Beyoncé’s pregnancy delayed the feature. Then the movie also lost Eastwood to another project.

“There was a moment where that was the best version of the movie and then all of a sudden, Beyonce got pregnant,” Gerber said. “Do we wait? She was amazing about all this stuff. She always understood if we were going to take a different direction. And then Clint went off and did another movie.”

Years later, the project would make its way to Bradley Cooper. But it wasn’t the first time he was tied to A Star Is Born. He was approached to star in Eastwood’s version of the feature, but he felt he was too young at the time. When the project circled back to him in his older years, Cooper believed he had the appropriate experience to both direct and shoot the movie.

Lady Gaga earned the lead role by auditioning for the film personally. She and Cooper later tested their chemistry at the latter’s house, which both felt was good enough for A Star Is Born.

“We made this sort of decision that first time at her house that we wanted to do the movie together. And we shook hands on it, and then it was just about ‘Okay, here we go,’ and started a long journey,” he said to Entertainment Weekly.

Clint Eastwood initially didn’t think Lady Gaga was right for ‘A Star Is Born’

Even though Eastwood was no longer attached, he still kept his eye on the film and followed its development. He felt the Alias star was a natural fit as both star and director for the movie. However, he originally had reservations about Gaga’s involvement until he saw it.

“I thought he [Cooper] did a great job. A lot of things that I wasn’t sure about… like he wanted [Lady Gaga]… I wasn’t sure she was right for it, but I think she is stunning in it,” Eastwood once told Extra TV (via NME).

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