101 user 47 critic

A Star Is Born (1976)

3:37 | Trailer
A has-been rock star falls in love with a young, up-and-coming songstress.


Frank Pierson


John Gregory Dunne (screenplay by), Joan Didion (screenplay by) | 3 more credits »
4,273 ( 108)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Barbra Streisand ... Esther Hoffman
Kris Kristofferson ... John Norman Howard
Gary Busey ... Bobby Ritchie
Oliver Clark ... Gary Danziger
Venetta Fields ... The Oreos
Clydie King ... The Oreos
Marta Heflin ... Quentin
M.G. Kelly M.G. Kelly ... Bebe Jesus
Sally Kirkland ... Photographer
Joanne Linville ... Freddie
Uncle Rudy Uncle Rudy ... Mo
Paul Mazursky ... Brian
Stephen Bruton Stephen Bruton ... The Speedway
Sammy Lee Creason Sammy Lee Creason ... The Speedway (as Sam Creason)
Cleve Dupin Cleve Dupin ... The Speedway


Talented rock star John Norman Howard has seen his career begin to decline. Too many years of concerts and managers and life on the road have made him cynical and the monotony has taken its toll. Then he meets the innocent, pure and very talented singer Esther Hoffman. As one of his songs in the movie says "I'm gonna take you girl, I'm gonna show you how." And he does. He shows Esther the way to stardom while forsaking his own career. As they fall in love, her success only makes his decline even more apparent. Written by A. Lloyd Adams [aadams@airmail.net]

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The evergreen Oscar winner ablaze with music and stardust.


Drama | Music | Romance


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Barbra Streisand wanted the part of John Norman Howard to be played by either Elvis Presley or Marlon Brando. See more »


In the swimming pool scene after the motorcycle accident at the stadium concert, John N Howard has Ace bandages on his foot and right hand. Yet, he is shown using the right hand to use a pair of crutches (would be too painful with a wrist sprain). He is also shown swimming, which is also painful to sprained joints. He is not shown wincing at all while swimming. He also puts weight on his right hand as he is getting out of the pool, pushing up on his fingertips on a straightened wrist. This would not be possible without severe pain, if the wrist is in fact damaged enough to require an Ace bandage. See more »


Esther Hoffman: I think I'll do my tour in trash flash.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Ms. Streisand's clothes from ... Her Closet. See more »


Crippled Crow
Music & Lyrics by Donna Weiss
Performed by Kris Kristofferson
See more »

User Reviews

Please be gentle with him
19 February 2016 | by kapelusznik18See all my reviews

**SOME SPOILERS** Very likely the schmaltziest of the three or is it four versions of the movie "A Star is Born" has super rock star John Norman Howard, Kris Kristofferson, self destruct right before our eyes as his old lady or wife Esther, Barbara Streisand, rises to to top of the pop music world without as much as breaking into a sweat or note. John who already was on the way down when he met Esther as a member of a bi-racial womens singing trio "The Oreos" and discovered as well as later married her while he was still sober. Before the poor and suffering from the DT's John knew it Esther became the biggest hit in the world of music with him becoming a helpless drunk and speed freak.

Despite her amazing success Esther still stuck by her man John and did her best to get him back on his feet and wagon but his pride just got in the way. The final straw was when John found semi nude "Rolling Stone" reporter Queint,Marta Heflin, taking a dip in his swimming pool who asked him for an exclusive interview. It's when a shocked Esther found John and Quint buff a** naked in bed and under the covers she blew a fuse and practically kicked him out of the house. What really ticked off the outraged Esther is just how the drugged out looking Quint acted as if there was nothing wrong in being in bed with John as she was interviewing him. John who by now had lost all his self respect and dignity continued to make a complete fool of himself in public at the expense of his wife Esther by falling down drunk at an award "The Grammies" show that his wife Ester was invited as a guest speaker. Drunk disorderly and and out of control a semi conscious and smashed out of his skull John in the end let it all go and went along with it. Taking a drive in the desert with his hopped up red sport car that in it going over 100 MPH overturned and killed him.

Unlike in the other versions of the movie where the husband ends it all by walking nude into the Pacific Ocean and drowning himself in here he took the land or scenic route to do himself in so to keep from getting himself wet and not having his body washed away out at sea. In fact John's death unlike the previous movies was more like and accident instead of a suicide which made it less, for what it's worth, tragic.

A devastated Esther who had since made up with her drunk and philandering husband John came back out of hiding to belt out a song at a memorial for her late husband who's singing brought the roof down as well as caused her to suffer what seemed like a major emotional as well as psychical breakdown. As Esther struggling to regain her composer seemed to lose it on the stage as well as at times forget the lyrics of the song she was singing! With her turning all the colors of the rainbow as the movie ended in an eerie freeze frame before she was given any sort of medical attention. Despite the movie's many faults it turned out to be one of the top money makers of 1976 doing some 80 million dollars in ticket sales.Which showed just how powerful Barbara Streisand's star power was even when she was given a turkey of a role as well as movie to perform in.

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Release Date:

17 December 1976 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rainbow Road See more »


Box Office


$6,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (extended)

Sound Mix:



Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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