The 91st Academy Awards is already a nightmare, thanks to outrage over moving four categories to commercial breaks, including Best Editing and Best Cinematography. But there is one silver lining of this mess of an Oscars: The telecast will feature Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga singing live together for the first time on television. The two acting Oscar nominees will perform “Shallow” from “A Star Is Born,” which is the frontrunner to win the Oscar for Best Original Song.
Cooper told Variety last November he was already eyeing a live performance of “Shallow” on Oscars night should the song get nominated, and now that the performance is set the actor is confirming he will perform “Shallow” as Bradley Cooper and not in character as Jackson Maine. Cooper told Stephen Colbert during an interview on CBS’ “The Late Show” that he’ll most likely perform the song in his tuxedo and not in his character’s costume. Cooper doesn’t intend to bring back Jackson’s deep voice either as he said he has fully retired the character.
“A Star Is Born” is nominated for eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Supporting Actress. Cooper himself is nominated for three Oscars, since he produced the movie (earning him a Best Picture nomination) and co-wrote the screenplay (he’s nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay with Eric Roth and Will Fetters). “A Star Is Born” is notable for being Cooper’s directional debut, although he missed out on a Best Director nomination. Most Oscar pundits agree Cooper’s Best Director snub is one of the biggest shocks of this year’s nominations.
“Even if I got the nomination, it should not give me any sense of whether I did my job or not,” Cooper told Oprah Winfrey earlier this year. “That’s the trick, to make something that you believe in…The only thing I set out to do was to tap into as authentic a place as possible. [An authentic place] in myself and everybody I asked to make this movie — to tell a human story of people who are going to deal with their family life, trauma as a child, addiction in a real way, love in this life and finding your voice.”
Watch Cooper talk about his upcoming Oscars performance in the video below. Cooper will hit the stage live with Lady Gaga when the Oscars air on Sunday, February 24.