Bradley Cooper to Star in AMERICAN SNIPER for Steven Spielberg

     May 2, 2013

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Yesterday’s news that Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook) would be departing Gavin O’Connor’s Jane Got a Gun makes a little more sense in light of today’s news: Cooper will star in American Sniper for director Steven Spielberg.  The Oscar-nominated actor has been involved with the picture – an adaptation of the bestselling Navy SEAL autobiography – for at least a year now.  It was previously thought that Cooper would re-team with director David O. Russell for the picture, but with those two currently filming American Hustle, it looks like Spielberg has signed on for American Sniper.

The autobiography from Texan Navy SEAL Chris Kyle retells his exploits of recording the highest number of sniper kills for an American, earning himself the nickname al-Shaitan (“the devil”) from Iraqi insurgents.  Passages from Kyle’s wife, “who slowly watches as her husband’s affection turns from her to the SEALs and war,” form an emotional core.  Hit the jump for more.

The Wrap reports that Spielberg will make American Sniper his next directorial effort.  Spielberg was expected to helm the Robopocalypse adaptation, but that film was delayed earlier this year.   He’s also busy co-producing a third wartime miniseries for HBO, will be jury president at the upcoming Cannes Film Festival, is developing Stanley Kubrick’s Napoleon as a TV miniseries, and has a number of other films in mind over the next few years – though Gods and Kings won’t be one of them.

american-sniper-book-coverHere’s a synopsis for American Sniper:

He is the deadliest American sniper ever, called “the devil” by the enemies he hunted and “the legend” by his Navy SEAL brothers . . .

From 1999 to 2009, U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle recorded the most career sniper kills in United States military history. The Pentagon has officially confirmed more than 150 of Kyles kills (the previous American record was 109), but it has declined to verify the astonishing total number for this book. Iraqi insurgents feared Kyle so much they named him al-Shaitan (“the devil”) and placed a bounty on his head. Kyle earned legendary status among his fellow SEALs, Marines, and U.S. Army soldiers, whom he protected with deadly accuracy from rooftops and stealth positions. Gripping and unforgettable, Kyle’s masterful account of his extraordinary battlefield experiences ranks as one of the great war memoirs of all time.

A native Texan who learned to shoot on childhood hunting trips with his father, Kyle was a champion saddle-bronc rider prior to joining the Navy. After 9/11, he was thrust onto the front lines of the War on Terror, and soon found his calling as a world-class sniper who performed best under fire. He recorded a personal-record 2,100-yard kill shot outside Baghdad; in Fallujah, Kyle braved heavy fire to rescue a group of Marines trapped on a street; in Ramadi, he stared down insurgents with his pistol in close combat. Kyle talks honestly about the pain of war—of twice being shot and experiencing the tragic deaths of two close friends.

American Sniper also honors Kyles fellow warriors, who raised hell on and off the battlefield. And in moving first-person accounts throughout, Kyles wife, Taya, speaks openly about the strains of war on their marriage and children, as well as on Chris.

Adrenaline-charged and deeply personal, American Sniper is a thrilling eyewitness account of war that only one man could tell. [Amazon]

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