When Bradley Cooper directed “A Star Is Born” in 2018, he instantly established himself as one of Hollywood’s hottest directors. The Oscar-winning film demonstrated Cooper’s ability to update old material for contemporary audiences and to seamlessly integrate music into his movies. Those two skills will certainly come in handy on his next outing behind the camera: “Maestro,” a new Leonard Bernstein biopic that sees Cooper playing the legendary composer in addition to directing. Netflix has released the first set photos from the film, which spans 30 years and tells the story of Bernstein’s extensive career as both a conductor and composer of symphonies, Broadway musicals, and film scores.
Along with Cooper, the film’s cast includes Matt Bomer, Maya Hawke, and Carey Mulligan, who plays Bernstein’s wife Felicia Montealegre. Cooper co-wrote the screenplay with “Spotlight” writer Josh Singer.
“Maestro” also boosts some serious pedigree in the form of executive producers Steven Spielberg and Martin Scorsese. Spielberg originally intended to direct the film himself, and reached out to Cooper about playing Bernstein years ago. But Cooper was able to convince the “West Side Story” director to hand him the reins after showing him an early cut of “A Star Is Born.”
“I’ll never forget this. He came, we were sitting there and I’m showing him ‘A Star Is Born’ and he’s all the way on the other side on the front row, it’s a pretty huge screen,” Cooper said. “It’s the scene where Jackson calls Ally up on the stage, it’s the biggest scene in the movie. And right as she just is going on the stage he gets up and I’m like, ‘Oh he’s going to the bathroom now?’ and I was like, ‘That’s it, it’s over. If he’s going to the bathroom at this point in the movie… and he gets up, he walks over, and I’m putting my head down and the next thing I know I feel his face here and he says, because it’s loud, ‘You’re f—ing directing ‘Maestro!’”
“Maestro” currently has no scheduled release date, but is currently in production and is expected to hit Netflix in 2023.