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Bradley Cooper has been in the news a lot lately for learning to sing and speak differently for A Star is Born. However, it was the work he had to put in for another drama, American Sniper, that actually shocked his celebrity trainer Jason Walsh. Walsh revealed in a recent interview that he never believed the actor would be able to physically personify Chris Kyle in American Sniper. He said:
However, even though Jason Walsh never really believed that Bradley Cooper could get buff enough to capably play Chris Kyle, he told Vanity Fair that the two men got to work right away. Jason Walsh decided that a trap bar deadlift would be the lift they really honed in on along with to get him to a point where he could lift from the ground. Per Walsh:
Ultimately, Bradley Cooper has shown a propensity to exceed expectations in all kinds of different movie roles. If you've seen American Sniper, you should know that Bradley Cooper got to the point where he was able to do the trap bar lift with 425 pounds, but it took a slew of 60-90 minute two-a-day workouts where he put his body through the ringer to get there.
Most of the time, Jason Walsh says the studios come to him about training someone for a movie. They have to figure out a lot of weird stuff. An example he gives is when Emily Blunt had to wear that huge exoskeleton for Edge of Tomorrow and they had to figure out workouts to help with the weight she would be carrying while filming.
For Bradley Cooper, it was less about needing to be mobile and more about needing to look like Chris Kyle, a former Navy SEAL and sniper who wrote the book American Sniper is based on. Chris Kyle was a large guy, bulky, who was later killed taking a vet who suffered from PTSD and schizophrenia to a shooting range.
When American Sniper came out in 2015, it was a big hit and the movie even earned awards nods, including a nomination for both Best Picture and for Bradley Cooper as Best Actor at the Oscars. Cooper also one a Critics Choice Award and an MTV Movie Award for the gig.