The late Judy Garland‘s daughter Lorna Luft couldn’t be happier about the upcoming Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga A Star Is Born remake. In fact, after reading the reviews, she was “jumping up and down with excitement,” she told People. “They’ve picked up the torch of one of the greatest love stories ever told on film and brought it to a new generation.”
In her new book, A Star is Born, Judy Garland and the Film That Got Away, the 65-year-old reveals how the original movie’s themes of stardom and addiction affected her mother — who starred in the 1976 version — in real life. “The film’s story and its underlying messages about fame hit too close to home,” she writes in the book.
After rising to fame on The Wizard of Oz, at the time, Judy thought A Star Is Born would kick off her stardom again, but they decided to cut the 180-minute film to 154 minutes before the premiere. “They cut it up and it cost her the Oscar,” Lorna shared. “It was heartbreaking for her because she knew what she had made.”
She added, “It’s cruel, but it’s also one of the great stories of the movie industry and that’s why I call it ‘the film that got away.'”
Lorna also opened up about how the movie industry self-destructed her mother, specifically when she was given amphetamines to lose weight (Judy died in 1969 at age 47 from an overdose). “MGM was a factory,” she explained. “They had the greatest faces on film, Hedy Lamar, Lana Turner, Katherine Hepburn. They had a look. Mom didn’t fit into as a kid.”
“They didn’t know the damage to the psyche of a child, binding her because her bust was getting big on The Wizard of Oz,” she added. “All they knew was that everyone on the lot was taking what they called ‘pep pills’ to give people energy and it didn’t make them hungry. And the word came down to the commissary that whenever Mama went to lunch, she was to be given consomé. While Mickey Rooney was eating a cheeseburger.”
Lorna’s book chronicles the history of all the films, and now, she can’t wait to see Bradley and Lady Gaga in the film. She shared, “I think it’s going to make me think of my mom but I think it’s also going to make me incredibly proud. The way she and Bradley Cooper have written the music together is just fantastic. They got to make their movie. Nobody took this away from them.”