Bradley Cooper is having a mid-career renaissance. After two consecutive Oscar noms in 2012 and 2013, he's surely in the position to hack away at a "passion project."
And it seems he's found it with the novel American Sniper by Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, who was the most lethal sniper in U.S history - and incidentally - was murdered last year by a Marine.
The book is an autobiographical look at being a professional killer, and in the wake of Kyle's murder, Cooper has become practically evangelical about the project:
I had to do right by him and his family, there was really no choice. You're sitting across the dining-room table talking to this person's father and mother. And his children and wife are there. And he's passed away. Knowing that they are putting all of their stories in your hands and the responsibly of that, it's actually unique.
The movie also stars Sienna Miller, Luke Grimes, Kyle Gallner, Sam Jaeger, Jake McDorman, and Cory Hardrict. The first photos suggest a gritty Hurt Locker-esque look, and it's clear that the film will be gunning for the same praise.
American Sniper goes on limited release on Christmas Day, with a general release to follow in January.