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Bradley Cooper Set to Star in 'American Sniper' for Steven Spielberg

Production is targeting an early 2014 start

Bradley Cooper and Steven SpielbergSteven Spielberg was originally going to tackle Robopocalypse after Lincoln, but that film was sent to the backburner leaving the Oscar-winning director without an upcoming project. Well, that's all changed as he will direct American Sniper for Warner Bros. and Dreamworks, based on the autobiography of Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, who earned two Silver Stars in Iraq.

Bradley Cooper will star as the Texas native who came to record the highest number of sniper kills for an American. And it was Cooper that was on top of this project all along as his production company, 22nd & Indiana Pictures, optioned the rights to the book a year ago after the book spent 18 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list and 13 weeks at number one.

Jason Hall (Spread) wrote the script. A first-quarter 2014 start date is being targeted.

Kyle's story doesn't end well as he was killed at a shooting range by a fellow vet in February. Featured below is an interview with him from Time. [THR]

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  • Adu

    Well, we can safely say this will have almost zero international appeal.

  • Kessler

    Cooper and Spielberg sound like a good combo. I'm not sold on the screenwriter though.

  • Chris

    Hmm, is this the sequel to American Hustle? Just kidding, but I think this can be very good. I'm one of the few who really did not enjoy Lincoln, but I'm glad he's doing this instead of Robopocalyspe.

    • Adu

      I would honestly want to see Spielberg's version of Robopocalyspe...I was quite impressed by the tension he created in War of the Worlds.

      I normally dont speak for Brad, but I know he wants to see big robot movies just as much as I do :)

  • Fox

    Ahh yes American Sniper, which starts shooting right after Cooper finishes American Hustle. That project also involves Christian Bale, who gained fame after starring in American Psycho, which came out two years after American History X, and one year after American Beauty. Remember that one? With Kevin Spacey and the girl from American Pie?

  • AS

    "the Texas native who came to record the highest number of sniper kills for an American" - Yes, what an accomplishment.... I've heard rumors that Mark Boal has been brought in for some script rewrites, Kathryn Bigelow will come on as an executive producer and Ben Affleck is currently being courted for a supporting role.

    • Criterion10

      It's funny, because as I read this article, I thought to myself, "Oh, boy. AS is definitely rolling his eyes at this one." And to be honest, I can't disagree with you. With Spielberg directing and a family friendly studio like WB behind the realm, I'm sure this will be nothing more than patriotic America-loving nonsense. The basic plot line simply expresses this.

      • AS

        It's depressing.

      • Jake17

        Yeah, I can't say I feel any different about it than you two. Sounds like an awful idea.

      • DapperDanMan

        AS and Criterion10, I like to read your film criticisms and both of you have great insight into cinema in general and though I don't always agree with you, it's good to once in awhile chat about movies with you... but you are both coming off sounding like complete A-holes here... if you don't like patriotic movies, don't go see them... I was never in the military, but I worked at a militray base for the past 7 years and have many friends who are currently in the military or were in the military and where as some (quite a few) military individuals are complete S***bags, there are a lot that are not... Chris Kyles life ended tragically... and it wasn't lost overseas in battle, it was lost here while he was trying to help another vet control his PTSD... I may have never fully supported any of our overseas actions of the past 8 or 9 years... but I do fully support those who volunteer to do that job... I'm sorry that you think this movie will just be "patriotic America-loving nonsense"...

  • SmartFilm

    Honestly, I would much rather see Spielberg back in the sci-fi realm rather than another biopic. Not that I was ever particularly sold on the Robopocolypse idea but I really enjoy his forays into the genre. Hopefully he's not just getting too old.

  • dslacker

    NOOOOOOoooo ! Not another Speilberg movie ! He gets worse every year. If he was telling the story of the end of the earth and everyone on it, he would find a way to tack on a happy ending. OK - I know - I don't have to watch it - and I won't.

    • DapperDanMan

      You do realize that Chris Kyle was killed by a fellow veteran, right? Brad even mentions it at the end of the article... not sure how that is a "happy ending"... if it's added into the movie still remains to be seen since this project was being set up prior to his death and based on the book he wrote...

      • dslacker

        If Speilberg can make a happy ending out of Lincoln's assassination - If he can make a sentimental sloppy ending out of AI, he'll have no trouble whatsoever sending ticketholders out of the theater with a smile on their face with this one. Death, destruction, angst, pain - hey, look ! We got Wookies ! :-)

        • DapperDanMan

          Schindler's List and Saving Private Ryan would stand up and disagree...

  • Matt

    Well this sounds better than "Robopocalypse", but I can't say I'm too excited for it. I don't mean to sound ignorant/uninformed, but is there much of a story here?

    • DapperDanMan

      There must be since it's based on 448 page book...

  • austinjoel

    I'm definitely interested in this. Chris Kyle's story is worth being told. His accomplishments in battle and sacrifice for his country deserve to be told. With all the super hero movies out there now it's good to see a real hero story being made.

  • navaneethks

    My only interest in this is the fact that it's a Spielberg movie.

  • Mikey

    I wasn't really all that interested in this story until I learned he was killed by a fellow vet. Could be something interesting there.

  • Chris138

    I'm a fan of Spielberg's work and I also like Bradley Cooper, but if there is ever a 'real life story' that didn't need to be made into a film, it's this one.

  • Winchester

    I was more interested in Robopocalypse personally. My gut reaction is not to be terribly interested at this point.