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Bradley Cooper gives a tour de force performance in A Star Is Born, both in front of the camera and behind it, where he makes his directorial debut.
To believably play rock star Jackson Maine, the actor felt like he had to really transform. “I knew that I couldn’t play me as this guy — I had to change everything,” says Cooper.
One of the most distinct choices Cooper made was to lower his voice. Jackson has a raspy, almost-growl when he speaks. “I knew I wanted to lower my speaking voice an octave,” explains the actor. “So I hired [dialect coach] Tim Monich early on — I mean, like, a year before we shot the movie. He moved to L.A. and we worked five days a week, four hours a day on exercises and lowering my voice. It was brutal, and it took months and months and months. The person that I used was Sam Elliott [who plays Jackson’s brother, Bobby] because I didn’t want [Jackson] to be only a country musician and I didn’t want him to have an accent. Sam grew up in California and his mother is from Texas, so it’s kind of this great hybrid voice.”