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    Bradley Cooper Called Award Shows "Interesting And Utterly Meaningless"

    "It’s quite a thing to work through."

    It feels like an eternity ago, but it was just back in 2019 when Bradley Cooper's take on A Star Is Born became a talking point of award show season.

    Bradley Cooper arrives at the 91st Oscars Nominees Luncheon.
    Steve Granitz / WireImage,

    At the time, many felt that the actor turned director was snubbed by the Oscars. Even Cooper expressed his surprise at not being nominated for Best Director, telling Oprah, "The first thing I felt was embarrassment, actually. I felt embarrassed that I didn’t do my part."

    Bradley Cooper attends 'El Hormiguero' TV Show at Vertice Studios.
    Juan Naharro Gimenez / WireImage

    With that moment now in his rearview mirror, Cooper opened up about how he sees award shows to A Star Is Born and Hamilton's Anthony Ramos for Interview Magazine.

    Anthony Ramos (L) and Bradley Cooper attend the 30th annual Producers Guild Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel.
    Jon Kopaloff / FilmMagic

    When Ramos described a key issue with award shows in general — "It can be easy for us to make it about individual people. But on set, you have your call sheet, and even though you have your leads, it’s a team effort... Everyone is the star of that movie" — Cooper echoed the sentiment.

     (L-R) Anthony Ramos, Lady Gaga, Dave Chappelle, Lukas Nelson and Bradley Cooper attend the "A Star Is Born" premiere.
    Kevin Mazur / Getty Images

    "That’s right," he said, adding that individuals up for awards can often end up feeling that they "must be special."

    Bradley Cooper attends 'A Star Is Born' photocall during the 75th Venice Film Festival.
    Stephane Cardinale - Corbis / Getty Images

    "But what we forget is that we’re a representation of the story that those 150 to 200 people told together. We’re like a walking flag," Ramos replied.

    Though Cooper and Ramos didn't mention it in the published interview, award shows also have a real issue with representation within the nominees. This past year at the Oscars, for example, there was only one nonwhite actor who was nominated among Actor in a Leading Role, Actress in a Leading Role, Actor in a Supporting Role, and Actress in a Supporting Role: Harriet's Cynthia Erivo.

    James Leynse / Getty Images

    Yet many people of color were nominated for other award shows the same year, as Vox pointed out.

    Cooper went on to share about award show season, in general, "It’s quite a thing to work through, and it’s completely devoid of artistic creation. It’s not why you sacrifice everything to create art, and yet you spend so much time being a part of it if you’re, in quotes, 'lucky enough to be a part of it.'"

    Bradley Cooper walks the red carpet ahead of the 'A Star Is Born' screening during the 75th Venice Film Festival.
    Stephane Cardinale - Corbis / Getty Images

    In his opinion, there is some value in the experience, and it's "interesting" in the way that it "makes you face ego, vanity, and insecurity," but it's also "utterly meaningless.”

    Actor Bradley Cooper attends the 'A Star Is Born' photocall during the 66th San Sebastian International Film Festival.
    Juan Naharro Gimenez / WireImage

    In other words, there could be 100 people in a room... who work on a film. But only one gets singled out.

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