Streisand, who fronted the 1976 version, previously gave the film her blessing after visiting the set, though she says now says she wanted a different version with Beyoncé and Will Smith.
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Barbra Streisand is walking back her prior praise for Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga's Oscar-winning version of the classic Hollywood tale A Star Is Born.

"At first, when I heard it was going to be done again, it was supposed to be Will Smith and Beyoncé, and I thought, that's interesting. Really make it different again, different kind of music, integrated actors, I thought that was a great idea," the 79-year-old singer-actress — who, opposite Kris Kristofferson, previously fronted Frank Pierson's adaptation of the oft-retold story — said during Sunday's episode of Australian talk series The Sunday Project. "So, I was surprised when I saw how alike it was to the version that I did in 1976."

She added that she "thought it was the wrong idea," but that she "can't argue with success" after the Cooper-directed film won Gaga her first Academy Award, received a Best Picture nomination, spawned a No. 1 single in the film's signature tune "Shallow," and grossed $436 million worldwide. Still, she finished, "I don't care so much about success as I do originality."

Following Streisand's interpretation of the story (which has also been filmed with leads Janet Gaynor and Fredric March in 1937 as well as with Judy Garland and James Mason in a 1954 version), it took several years to get a modern gestation brewing. In June 2011, Clint Eastwood and Leonardo DiCaprio reportedly eyed Beyoncé for a lead role, and rumors of her casting sustained through 2015. Before that, as far back as 2002, Smith had reportedly courted Jennifer Lopez to star opposite himself in an earlier vision for the story.

Streisand's comments come after both Cooper and Gaga praised Streisand during promotional interviews during the film's release cycle — particularly after the icon visited the set while the pair filmed scenes.

"She gave us a blessing. Everybody was so excited she was there. We just looked at each other and were like, 'Wow. How are we here right now?'" Cooper previously told EW, while Gaga added, "She was so, so kind."

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Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga next to Kris Kristofferson and Barbra Streisand in 'A Star Is Born.'
| Credit: Neal Preston/Warner Bros.; Everett Collection

Despite her recent remarks, Streisand has long praised Cooper and Gaga's iteration of the story, which follows Cooper as Jackson Maine, a down-and-out rocker who discovers a rising superstar in fledgling singer Ally (Gaga) and helps transform her into an industry sensation.

"Of course I've seen it. I loved it. I think it's wonderful. She's wonderful," Streisand told Extra in 2018, and reiterated her feelings in a 2018 Variety profile.

"I think he did a wonderful job with her," she said of Cooper's direction of Gaga. "I thought when it was going to be done [with Beyoncé] it was going to be very different and have a multiracial cast, and the music was going to be rap. But it's more like the movie I made."

Watch Streisand discuss Cooper and Gaga around the five-minute mark in the Sunday Project clip above.

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