16 Aug 2023

Bradley Cooper criticised over use of prosthetic nose in Leonard Bernstein biopic

Leonard Bernstein, the prolific composer and conductor best known for writing the music to West Side Story, is the subject of a forthcoming biopic.  But the publicity for the film ‘Maestro’ has attracted criticism with accusations that it’s perpetuating jewish stereotypes.

In the movie, Bradley Cooper, who is not Jewish, wears a prosthetic nose to play Bernstein, leading some Jewish figures to accuse him of offensive stereotyping.

But defending the film in a statement released online, Leonard Bernstein’s children said: “It happens to be true that Leonard Bernstein had a nice, big nose. Bradley chose to use makeup to amplify his resemblance, and we’re perfectly fine with that”.

We’re joined by the actor Tracy-Ann Oberman, who’s currently playing Shylock in a performance of Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice set amid the rise of Oswald Mosely’s British Union of Fascists.