The opening scenes of cars arriving for the benefit combine actual shots of a Hollywood event with ones filmed for the movie. But in one shot, taken from the perspective of a spotlight crew atop their tower, the footage of the real event is shown on the right side of the screen, while footage shot for the movie is at the left. Not only is the disparity between the two shots obvious, but the split screen is completely mismatched, so that the cars on the right appear to be moving at a sharp angle directly into the cars and building in the shot at left, and it looks as though there are two streets intersecting below.
As read by the justice of the peace when he marries Norman and Vicki, Norman's real name is Ernest Sidney Gubbens.
Why is the movie interspersed with still photos?
A Star is Born was restored in 1983 to it's original running time. The original (1954) release premiered at 181 minutes, but theater owners complained about the length, wanting a shorter film so they could have more showings per day, hence more money in the box office. Consequently, Warner Bros shortened it, cutting out 27 extra minutes. The excised footage was then carelessly handled, lost, or not filed properly. After an extensive search, about 20 minutes of actual film and the original soundtrack were found and re-added to the 154 minute film. Where film footage was not able to be restored, production stills were inserted. The missing seven minutes of footage has never been found. The whole story on what happened to the lost footage can be read here.
A Note Regarding Spoilers
The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags have been used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.