Tuesday night at the Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills, we witnessed the tender side of Lady Gaga, as she hit the campaign trail in support of Best Original Song Oscar contender “Til It Happens to You,” from “The Hunting Ground,” the Oscar-shortlisted doc about sexual assault on college campuses.
Accompanied by co-writer and seven-time Oscar nominee Diane Warren, Gaga gave a slightly more somber performance (in contrast to the defiance displayed in her recorded version for the Kirby Dick-directed doc).
Gaga, who recently admitted to being a rape survivor, said she’s humbled by the outpouring of support for the song. “I wanted it to be empowering,” she added.
For her part, Warren said she hopes that both the movie and the song will help young girls stand up to sexual abuse, while Dick said he will continue making provocative docs, even though it doesn’t necessarily get any easier with such success and exposure.
Among the luminaries in attendance were Piper Laurie (“The Hustler,” “Carrie”) and Brenda Vaccaro (“Midnight Cowboy”), who lends voice support to Laika’s fourth stop-motion feature, “Kubo and the Two Strings” (August 19).
Laurie, the three-time Oscar nominee, who’s played her share of abused and abusive women, told me that “The Hustler” turned out differently than she envisioned, and that she was flabbergasted by the success of “Carrie.”
Then, when Laurie introduced herself to Gaga, the pop diva embraced her warmly. It was a fitting acknowledgment of Laurie’s talent and influence.