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Actor Bradley Cooper calls his 'hero'

Actor Bradley Cooper calls his 'hero'


Marcel Proust is widely credited with originating the saying that you should never meet your heroes, but as popular and ingrained in the collective consciousness as that phrase has become, Bradley Cooper scoffed at it.

Since gaining attention for his supporting role as Will Tippin in the hit spy series A.k.aThe evolution the actor and filmmaker has embarked on since rising to fame in Hollywood is nothing short of remarkable, with Cooper now at the point where critical acclaim has become second nature.

Fifteen years ago, it would have seemed absurd to suggest to the star of Hangover There were double-digit Oscar nominations lurking just around the corner, but that's precisely where Cooper finds himself today after Maestro earned him as many as 12 Academy Award nominations across five distinct categories.

Back when he was a complete stranger seeking advice from one of the best in the business, Cooper lobbied Robert De Niro during the latter's appearance on Inside the actors' studioblissfully unaware that they would become friends as well as regular collaborators.

After first starring together in the sci-fi thriller UnlimitedCooper and De Niro would end up on David O. Russells Silver Linings Playbook, JoyAnd American unrestwhile the former would produce Todd Phillips Jokerin which the latter played talk show host Murray Franklin.

Reflecting on the first time they shared the screen together, Cooper admitted The Hollywood Reporter that he had made a habit of trying to recruit De Niro for any project in which he had the slightest creative influence.

It was the first time I tried to cast for a film, even though I wasn't the director, and I went to see him in his hotel room, he said. I presented everything to him and then he ended up saying yes, which blew me away because he was my hero. Not only that, but it was De Niro who suggested to Cooper that moving behind the camera was a career move worth considering.

After that movie he said he thought I should direct it, Cooper continued, which ultimately saw him choose A star is born like his debut when Clint Eastwood, with whom he had already worked on American sniper stepped down from the director's chair after the star had already signed on to play the lead role.

These days, Cooper is happy to refer to De Niro as his friend, even if his inner fan still marvels at the very surreal coincidence that allowed him to refer to the legendary actor as such. It's a far cry from nervously asking him a question on a TV show, that's for sure, although he couldn't have even dreamed of forming a close bond back then.

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