Many people are aware of the name who created the masterpiece like Crazy Hearts in Hollywood. For those who have been living under the rock until now, we are proud to tell you about the 50-year-old director, screenwriter, actor and producer, Scott Cooper. He made himself recognized amongst other producers and directors when he directed Crazy Heart (2009), Out of the Furnace (2013), Black Mass (2015) and Hostiles (2017). All of these contributed to become the milestone in his career at such an early age.
Before we delve deeper into his accomplishments and achievements, let’s see who is Scott Cooper.
Who is Scott Cooper?
Born in Abingdon, Virginia on April 20, 1970, Scott Cooper had already chosen Film and Theatre as his passion to pursue as a career. He graduated from Abingdon High School in 1988. After that, he decided to train himself as an actor at a reputable institute called Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York. By 1992, he had received his undergraduate degree and his Doctor of Humane Letters in 2014 from Hampden Sydney College from Hampden Sydney, Australia.
For quite a long time, Scott Cooper remained affiliated with acting. In 2009, he took his first step from field of acting into directing and received praises and appreciation for Crazy Heart, a tour de force. The film is based on a 1987 novel by Thomas Cobb. The film features Jeff Bridges and Maggie Gyllenhaal as the two main protagonists. It was released by Fox searchlight Pictures and bagged two Academy Awards at the 82nd Academy Awards for Best Actor (Bridges) and Best Original Song. Many prominent personalities like Director Ridley Scott and Producer Michael Costigan, executives at Leonardo DiCaprio’s Production Company, Appian Way. Scott Cooper was also offered to develop The Low Dweller which was a spec script written by Brad Ingelsby with DiCaprio as actor and Scott Cooper as Director. Scott Cooper rewrote the whole script keeping in view his personal experience of growing up in Appalachia and facing the emotional loss of losing a sibling at a young age.
Cooper took one more step towards success when he directed Out of the Furnace in 2012 by casting Christian Bale, Woody Harrelson and Casey Affleck in his new movie. He also shared writing credits with Ingelsby. Both DiCaprio and Scott remained as producers.
In 2014, Scott Cooper was given a chance to rewrite as well as direct Black Mass. The theme of the film revolved around crime drama and was an adaptation of a novel of the same name by Dick Lehr and Gerard O’Neill. It is based on true events involving the lives of Billy Bulger and Whitey Bulger, FBI Agent John Connolly and the FBI witness’s protection program made by J. Edgar Hoover. Initially, Barry Levinson had been involved with the project. Johnny Depp whose affiliation with the project wasn’t confirmed finally came on board to spellbound the audience with his stellar performance as Boston crime boss, Whitey Bulger. He shared the screen with Joel Edgerton as Connolly and Benedict Cumberbatch as Billy Bulger. The film was released in 2015.
Cooper also wrote, directed and produced Hostiles in 2017. It was a rough adaptation of the late screenwriter Donald E. Stewart, based on a decade old manuscript. He reteamed with his Out of the Furnace star, Christian Bale and co-starred Rosamund Pike. The Film had its world premiered at the Telluride Film Festival with US distribution rights picked up by Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures. It is expected that a supernatural horror film, Antlers, will be blessing our screens, directed by Scott Cooper and starring Keri Russell and Jesse Plemons. Followed by this, Christian Bale also announced that Scott Cooper will direct his upcoming film, Valhalla.
Cooper’s Acting Career
Fans often ask about Cooper’s roles and appearances in different films. His diehard fans wouldn’t like to miss a chance to see their favorite director on screens. Here’s a list of roles and appearances along with their respective movie names;
- As Robert in Dry Martini (1998)
- As Guy in bar in Perfect Fit (1999)
- As Klansman’s son Bobby in Austin Powers: The Guy Who Shagged Me (1999)
- As Jake Cronin in Takedown (2000)
- As Dillian McCarthy in Bill’s Gun Shop (2001)
- As Pvt. Holland in Rain (2001)
- As Lt. Joseph Morrison in Gods and Generals (2003)
- As Jake Connor in Save It for Later (2003)
- As Rails in Attitude (2003)
- As Will Custis in For Sale By Owner (2009)
- As Carl in Get Low (2009)
He has also made occasional appearances in Television shows;
- As Max Harden in The X-Files (1999)
- As Michael Barret in The District (2001)
- As Gilpin in Broken Trail (2006)
When asked about his influences, Cooper named Thomas Wolfe and William Faulkner as his literary influences. Numerous films have influenced Scott Cooper’s production. These include Robert Altman’s Nashville, Terrance Malick’s Badlands, John Huston’s Bad City and Peter Bogdanovich’s The Last Picture Show. However, his film-making guru has been veteran actor, producer and director, Robert Duvall. They both met on the sets of “Gods and Generals” and have been friends since then. Robert Duvall and Scott Cooper, both appeared in “Broken Trail” and Duvall also appeared as well as produced Cooper’s “Crazy Heart” (2009).
Scott Cooper is married and has two daughters, Ava and Stella. He lives in Los Angeles with his family.
Scott Cooper’s Miami Scholarship Program
To promote young talent in the field of Film and TV, Scott Cooper has started a scholarship initiative called Scott Cooper Miami Scholarship Program. The scholarship is offered in numerous subjects which are as follows:
- Business Management
All students residing in U.S. and Canada are eligible to be considered for $500 scholarship.
All in all, Scott Cooper is the talent we all expect to see on our screens in the upcoming future. His unprecedented skills in direction and amazing film-making adroitness will make him the new face of Hollywood real soon.