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Since directing her own episodes on “American Horror Story” this season, Sarah Paulson has taken notice to directing techniques in shows and movies – and she has particular appreciation for Bradley Cooper’s film work in “A Star is Born.”

“I remember watching the opening sequence of ‘A Star is Born’ and thinking ‘Oh, Bradley Cooper did this amazing thing where Gaga is walking up, she’s ascending, as the title sequence comes on and it’s this beautiful visual metaphor of her rise we’re about to watch,” Paulson told Tracee Ellis Ross during the pair’s Actors on Actors interview. “And I don’t know if I would’ve thought that way before [directing myself].”

Directing episodes for the FX anthology series is the first time Paulson has found herself behind the camera, and she admits that it was a terrifying experience. Paulson, who has taken on eight different roles on the show since its first season, was initially supposed to take the reigns on a different episode than the one she ultimately directed, giving her very limited prep time before delving in.

“It was scary. It was really, really scary,” she said. “And I think when you’re doing something for the first time always it’s hard to be present and I’m just so worried about failing. It’s this thing I’m always dancing on the edge of how to get comfortable with that possibility of failure.”

“Actors on Actors” will air on PBS June 18th and 20th.


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