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“I didn’t know what ‘VOD’ was! I thought it was a sort of disease.”

It was Saturday night and Jennifer Lawrence was doing what she does best: the incredulous strain of self-deprecation that she’s done to charm the pants off America since she started. She was yucking it up on the red carpet of her latest film “Serena,” before its Cinema Society-hosted and Dior Beauty-sponsored premiere at the Landmark Sunshine Cinema, answering the only real question worth asking: how did this critically panned, straight-to-on-demand bomb of a movie happen?

This story first appeared in the March 24, 2015 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Everything Lawrence has touched — along with costar and repeat on-screen love interest Bradley Cooper — has turned to gold (or more accurately, green at the box office): “Silver Linings Playbook,” “American Hustle,” along with their recent solo victories, “The Hunger Games” franchise and “American Sniper.” But clearly having Lawrence and Cooper’s names attached wasn’t enough insurance for “Serena” — which was adapted from the best-selling Twenties period novel of the same name — to avoid the pitfall of video on demand (the film will have a very limited theatrical release as well.) “Oh, it’s great,” said Cooper, trying to cull excitement about the film’s fate into his voice.

Cooper was working on “Silver Linings” when the project’s script found its way to Lawrence, who then took on the role of casting director. “I forced him to come onto the movie,” Lawrence admitted. “Any male role is going to make me think of Bradley because in my opinion, he’s the best. I love working with him.” Cooper was quick to echo the sentiment. “I respect her so much as a professional, as an actor, and I think that she’s the best there is,” he said. “You always want to work with people who are better than you.”

Producer Todd Wagner summed it up quite nicely: “Let’s face it, they like to work together.”

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