Over the summer, we were treated to our first brief glimpse at Maestro, Bradley Cooper’s biopic of great American composer Leonard Bernstein.
But no matter how good the teaser was, all anyone could talk about were the prosthetics Cooper was sporting for the role. Is it problematic for the actor to enhance his nose to look more like the Jewish conductor? Opinions were mixed, to say the least…
On the other hand, no one seemed to mind that Cooper would be going “gay for pay” to play Bernstein who, despite his years-long marriage to actress Felicia Montealegre, was known for his relationships and flings with men and is now widely recognized as bisexual.
Today, Netflix dropped the first full-length trailer for the film, which promises such an epic scope and sweeping romanticism that it’s hard to get too hung up on who’s-playing-who, or gripes over hair and makeup.
Would it be too on the nose to say Maestro looks utterly symphonic?
The film is Cooper’s second go in the director’s chair, following up his celebrated update of A Star Is Born, which made Ally Maine every gay’s second favorite pop star (after Lady Gaga, of course).
Just as the 2018 film focused on the romance of two artists, Maestro‘s main thread is the relationship between Bernstein and Montealegre (Carey Mulligan), who remained married for 27 years until her death in 1978.
Crucial to their story, however, are the men in Bernstein’s life. The trailer offer glimpses of black-and-white flashbacks to the composer’s connection with clarinetist David Oppenheim (Fellow Travelers‘ Matt Bomer). It’s been said the two were “close friends,” although widely shared photos from set showed Cooper and Bomer’s characters sharing a kiss.
We also see a moment where Bernstein holds hands with music scholar Tommy Cothran (Broadway star Gideon Glick)—who lived with the composer for a short period of time—while his wife looks on. By all accounts, Maestro approached these gay relationships with care, and doesn’t just pay them lip service.
Cooper is directing and starring in the movie about Leonard Bernstein.
Also among the cast is comedian Sarah Silverman as Bernstein’s younger sister Shirley, Do Revenge star Maya Hawke as his daughter Jamie, and this year’s Queerty Pride50 Catalyst Award honoree, Michael Urie. The Ugly Betty actor plays queer theater legend Jerome Robbins, who created West Side Story with Bernstein, Stephen Sondheim, and Arthur Laurents.
Maestro (co-produced by film legends Steven Spielberg and Martin Scorsese) made its world premiere this past September at the Venice International Film Festival, and then had a warm “hometown” reception during the New York Film Festival at the David Geffen Hall—where Bernstein conducted a symphony on opening night in 1962.
The film is set to open in select U.S. theaters on November 22, and then will stream exclusively on Netflix beginning December 20.
You can watch the first official trailer for Maestro below:
The man who had sex with Bradley Cooper (in a movie!) says “it’s fine” if he plays gay composer Leonard Bernstein
We’ve only seen a trailer thus far, but Bradley Cooper’s biopic ‘Maestro’ is already one of the most controversial movies of the fall.