You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Bradley Cooper in ‘Silver Linings Playbook’

Eye on the Oscar: The Actor - Best Actor Contenders

Given that Bradley Cooper’s favorite actor is Daniel Day-Lewis, one would think he would be ecstatic to be mentioned in the same breath as the two-time Oscar winner during the year-end awards races.

Cooper is being talked up for his revelatory work in David O. Russell’s “Silver Linings Playbook” while Day-Lewis is being put on a pedestal for his brilliance as “Lincoln.” But Cooper downplays any kudos buzz.

“One thing I learned early on is, hype is what it is,” he says. “I was in a series called ‘Kitchen Confidential,’ and people were telling me, ‘Get ready for your life to change. You’re going to win an Emmy Award.’ The series lasted three episodes.”

In “Silver Linings Playbook,” Cooper stars as Pat, who returns to his parents’ Philadelphia home after a stint in a mental institution. Though he repeatedly insists that he’s recovered, Pat’s manic, panicked eyes reveal that he’s anything but.

Cooper, best known for parts accentuating his charisma and wit, admits the role is new territory for him.

“David showed me the script months prior to asking me to do it, and I thought, ‘Wow, this is great but I don’t think I’ll get this, and I’m probably not right for it,’ ” he recalls. “I was terrified. I had never done that on film before.”

He credits co-star Robert De Niro, who plays his father, for instilling in him the necessary confidence.

“I learned that he championed me to get the role,” Cooper says. “I confided in him my fear, and he pointed out that I had a lot in common with the character. I’m an Italian-Irish guy from Philly. We really clicked, and it was the most fun experience I’ve had. We shot for 33 days, and I found Pat while I was on camera.”

Home | Daniel Day-Lewis >>

Popular on Variety

More Scene

  • Taron Egerton Elton John Rocketman Live

    Elton John and Taron Egerton Duet at 'Rocketman' Awards Season Event at the Greek Theatre

    “Rocketman” has officially launched into awards season. Paramount hosted a screening of the film with a live-performance of the score by the Hollywood Symphony Orchestra and a headlining performance by Elton John and the film’s star Taron Egerton. John and Egerton — who is in contention for best actor for his portrayal of the singer [...]

  • Hailee Steinfeld Dickinson Premiere

    Hailee Steinfeld, Jane Krakowski on What Modern Women Can Learn From Emily Dickinson

    Emily Dickinson lived in the 1800s, but if you ask the team behind Apple TV Plus’ upcoming series, “Dickinson,” her story is more current than ever. Hailee Steinfeld stars in the the modern-day retelling of the poet’s young life. The actress — who makes her first full-time foray into television with the role and also [...]

  • Don Cheadle

    ACLU Bill of Rights Gala to Honor Don Cheadle, Feature Appearances by Selena Gomez, Regina Hall

    The American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California will honor “Avengers: Endgame” and “Black Monday” star Don Cheadle at the organization’s annual Bill of Rights dinner on Nov. 17 at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel. Cheadle will be recognized for his activist work as an advocate for racial and gender equality, immigration reform, reproductive and LGBTQ [...]

  • Helen Mirren attends the LA Premiere

    Why Helen Mirren Considers Catherine the Great to Be 'Superhuman'

    It’s no secret that Dame Helen Mirren has a knack for nailing regal roles. Following her Oscar-winning on-screen reign as Queen Elizabeth II back in 2006, the thespian brings yet another powerful ruler to life in HBO’s limited mini-series “Catherine the Great.” Just as she does on the small screen as Russian Empress Catherine II, [...]

  • Taika Waititi Jojo Rabbit Premiere

    Why Director Taika Waititi Decided to Play Adolf Hitler in 'Jojo Rabbit'

    “Fox Searchlight blackmailed me into doing it,” Taika Waititi told Variety of playing Adolf Hilter in “Jojo Rabbit” at the film’s premiere at American Legion Post 43 on Tuesday night in Hollywood. Staying mum when asked which other actors had been on his wish list to play the role, Waititi explained why he eventually decided [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content