A Star Is Born (1937)




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Movie Info

A Star is Born came into being when producer David O. Selznick decided to tell a "true behind-the-scenes" story of Hollywood. The truth, of course, was filtered a bit for box-office purposes, although Selznick and an army of screenwriters based much of their script on actual people and events. Janet Gaynor stars as Esther Blodgett, the small-town girl who dreams of Hollywood stardom, a role later played by both Judy Garland and Barbra Streisand in the 1954 and 1976 remakes. Jeered at by most of … More

Rating: PG
Genre: Drama, Classics
Directed By: ,
Written By: Robert Carson, Dorothy Parker, Alan Campbell, Bob Carson, John Lee Mahin
In Theaters:
On DVD: Nov 16, 2004
Image Entertainment Inc. - Official Site


as Esther/Vicki

as Norman Maine

as Oliver Niles

as Danny McGuire

as Lettie

as Casey Burke

as Anita Regis

as Theodore Smythe

as Aunt Mattie

as Central Casting Rece...

as Billy Moon

as Pop Randall

as Makeup Man

as Makeup Man

as Photographer

as Academy Awards Speak...

as Bartender at Santa A...

as Rustic

as Station Agent

as Justice of the Peace

as Night Court Judge

as Prisoner

as People at Burke's Pa...

as Prisoner

as Bailiff

as Orchestra Leader at ...

as Announcer at Chinese...

as Artie Carver

as Delivery Boy

as Justice of the Peace

as Waitress

as Cuddles

as Assistant Cameraman

as Painter

as Woman at Preview

as Makeup man

as Girl in beret (Santa...

as Voice Coach

as Headwaiter

as Bartender at Santa A...

as Marion (Santa Anita ...

as Party Guest
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Critic Reviews for A Star Is Born

All Critics (15) | Top Critics (3)

Full Review… | August 28, 2008
Top Critic

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

Starring Janet Gaynor and Frederic March in Oscar-nominated roles, this first version of the famous Hollywood story was directed by William Wellman; it was remade in 1954 with Judy Garland, and in 1976 with Barbra Streisand.

Full Review… | January 23, 2011

Judy Garland, for all her personal problems, shows on the screen why she's a star.

Full Review… | July 17, 2007
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

William A. Wellman's original 1937 A Star Is Born is the essential Hollywood cautionary tale.

Full Review… | August 21, 2003
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Audience Reviews for A Star Is Born

The original. 1937. Typical of Hollywood, it's slick and flush with warnings of the dangers and lies of Hollywood while at the same time glamorizing them. Anyway, a wide-eyed gal from the sticks goes to L.A. to make it in the big time only to fall for a star who conversely fading, etc., etc., etc. Why does she make it? Why does he fail? That's not shown, only implied.
Janet Gaynor was an unknown quantity to me, though a big star in her time, and she nearly won me over by the film's end, especially the scene where, as a waitress, she auditions for Tinseltown bigwigs, impersonating other well known 1930's stars.
But the film belongs to Fredric March who is introduced as unlikable, seldom veers far from that, and yet must maintain our interest so we can not like him some more. Adolf Menjou, yet again, plays the supporting character/deus ex machina throughout unobtrusively.
Not bad.

Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer


This is one of the original "young girl goes to Hollywood to become famous" movies. It's a little too optimistic, by our cynical POV today, yet isn't completely a glossy picture either. It seems a lot like what could have really happened with young celebrities back then, maybe, if they were attractive and very lucky, which she is. The cast is perfect in their roles, though, so it's an enjoyable movie to watch with drama, comedy and romance. So, it's pretty good, and like I said, one of the originals, but not the best of this kind of movie.

Aj V

Super Reviewer


The Judy version is the best but this is an enjoyable film with fine performances.

jay nixon

Super Reviewer

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