Bradley Cooper's latest film role as the legendary Leonard Bernstein in "Maestro" is a testament to his dedication and transformative acting prowess. His remarkable metamorphosis into the iconic composer and conductor has been receiving widespread acclaim, particularly for its authenticity and depth.
Jamie Bernstein, Leonard Bernstein's eldest daughter, was astounded by Cooper's portrayal, saying, "His dedication to the role is so profound that there are moments where he mirrors our father so precisely, it's breathtaking." To accurately depict Bernstein's life, from his early career in 1943 to his later years, Cooper, aged 48, underwent an extensive transformation.
Collaborating with Kazu Hiro, a renowned makeup-effects artist, Cooper used four sets of prosthetics and two bodysuits to bring out the different stages of Bernstein's life. Hiro's expertise in creating lifelike effects played a crucial role in the film, capturing Bernstein's physical evolution over the years.
Addressing the Controversy
The film initially faced some backlash due to Cooper using a prosthetic nose to portray the Jewish conductor. However, Bernstein's children quickly came to the film's defense, stating their approval of the makeup.
They believed their father would have also supported the artistic decision, quelling any concerns about the portrayal. Mark Bridges, an Oscar-winning costume designer, was pivotal in recreating Bernstein's iconic style. He meticulously designed a range of outfits, from elegant double-breasted suits to casual turtlenecks, sometimes replicating Bernstein's actual attire from photographs.
Bridges' attention to detail ensured that Cooper's portrayal was not only authentic in appearance but also in style.
Global Release and Anticipation
"Maestro," directed and co-written by Bradley Cooper, who also stars alongside Carey Mulligan and Benny Safdie, made its debut in select theaters on November 22.
The film has already started streaming globally on Netflix since December 20, bringing this captivating story to a worldwide audience. As Cooper takes on this iconic role, his transformation into Leonard Bernstein is not just a change in appearance but a complete immersion into the character, showcasing his exceptional talent and dedication to his craft.