Scott Cooper

Director, Actor, Producer
After toiling for several years as an unknown but employable actor, Scott Cooper took his career by the reins and directed "Crazy Heart" (2009), the poignant tale of a broken-down country music singer that earned ... Read more »

Filmography

Actor (13)

Get Low 2010 (Movie)

Carl (Actor)

1968: Tunnel Rats 2008 (Movie)

Private Joseph Walderson (Actor)

For Sale by Owner 2006 (Movie)

Will Custis (Actor)

Bill's Gun Shop 2005 (Movie)

Dillon McCarthy (Actor)

Ladder 49 2004 (Movie)

Billy (Actor)

Takedown 2004 (Movie)

Nevin (Actor)

At Home with the Braithwaites 2002 - 2003 (Tv Show)

Actor

Gods and Generals 2003 (Movie)

Lt. Joseph Morrison (Actor)

The District 2001 (Tv Show)

Actor

Austin Powers: the Spy Who Shagged Me 1999 (Movie)

Bobby--Klansman's Son (Actor)

The X-Files 1999 (Tv Show)

Actor

Broken Trail (TV Show)

Actor

Rain (TV Show)

Actor
Director (4)

Black Mass 2015 (Movie)

(Director)

Out of the Furnace 2013 (Movie)

(Director)

Crazy Heart 2009 (Movie)

(Director)

The Emperor's Children (Movie)

(Director)
Producer (3)

Black Mass 2015 (Movie)

(Producer)

Crazy Heart 2009 (Movie)

(Producer)

For Sale by Owner 2006 (Movie)

(Co-Producer)
Writer (3)

Out of the Furnace 2013 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Crazy Heart 2009 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

For Sale by Owner 2006 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Biography

After toiling for several years as an unknown but employable actor, Scott Cooper took his career by the reins and directed "Crazy Heart" (2009), the poignant tale of a broken-down country music singer that earned critical acclaim and several key awards. Cooper was born in Virginia, but spent a fair part of his youth being raised in Somerset, KY, where he attended Somerset High School for one year before moving back to Virginia with his family. Growing up, he was reared on bluegrass music and Southern literature, which had a profound influence on his creative decisions later in life. Meanwhile, he ventured north to the Lee Strasberg Institute in New York, where he trained to be an actor. Cooper had a minor supporting part in "Gods and Generals" (2003), which starred his acting mentor Robert Duvall as General Robert E. Lee. Following a small part in the crime thriller "Takedown" (2004) and a larger supporting turn in the uplifting "Ladder 49" (2004), Cooper was finally noticeable as Henry 'Heck' Gilpin in the award-winning miniseries, "Broken Trail" (AMC, 2006), which gave the actor an opportunity to work again with Duvall. Unsatisfied with the roles he was being offered, Cooper set out to make inroads as a writer and director; his first effort was the script for the horror film "For Sale By Owner" (2009), in which he also starred. But instead of crafting his own performance piece, he next instead stayed strictly behind the camera as the writer and director of "Crazy Heart" (2009), which starred Jeff Bridges as Bad Blake, a burnt-out country music star reduced to playing gigs at bowling alleys while trying to hold on to what remains of his self-respect. With a trail of broken marriages and even more broken bottles, Blake finally starts to find redemption with the help of a journalist (Maggie Gyllenhaal), who starts to uncover the real man behind the music. After writing the script, Cooper turned to Duvall, who immediately offered to be the executive producer. Determined to land Jeff Bridges for the lead and T-Bone Burnett to compose the music, Cooper did just that, fulfilling what he considered to be his top two requirements to make the film. Purposely directed with a 1970s feel, "Crazy Heart" won widespread critical acclaim, particularly for Bridges, who began to accumulate all the major acting awards in early 2010. Cooper next co-wrote and directed the crime thriller "Out of the Furnace" (2013), starring Christian Bale and Woody Harrelson. He was attached to write the script for Angelina Jolie's second film as a director, "Unbroken" (2014), though the final credits went to Joel and Ethan Coen, Richard LaGravenese, and William Nicholson. Cooper's next film as a director and producer, was the mob drama "Black Mass" (2015), starring Johnny Depp as real-life Boston mobster turned FBI informant James "Whitey" Bulger opposite Joel Edgerton and Dakota Johnson.

Relationships

Jocelyne Cooper

Wife
Married at Duvall's 360-acre property in the plains of Virginia

Ava Cooper

Daughter

Stella Cooper

Daughter

EDUCATION

Lee Strasberg Institute

New York , New York

Milestones

2015

Produced and directed "Black Mass," a crime thriller starring Johnny Depp, Joel Edgerton and Dakota Johnson

2013

Directed and co-wrote thriller "Out of the Furnace," starring Christian Bale and Woody Harrelson

2009

Again collaborated with Robert Duvall on "Get Low," which also starred Bill Murray and Sissy Spacek

2009

Acted with longtime friend and mentor Robert Duvall in indie drama "Get Low"

2009

Directed first feature, country music drama "Crazy Heart," starring Jeff Bridges; also wrote screenplay and co-produced with Robert Duvall

2009

Made screenwriting debut with horror film "For Sale by Owner"; also produced and starred in the film

2006

Re-teamed with Duvall for the AMC miniseries "Broken Trail"

2004

Acted opposite Joaquin Phoenix and John Travolta in "Ladder 49"

2002

First acted opposite Robert Duvall in the Civil War epic "Gods and Generals"

2000

Appeared in "Takedown" with Tom Berenger and Skeet Ulrich

1999

Had a small role in "Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me"

1984

Made feature acting debut as a judge in "Breakin'"

Bonus Trivia

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Cooper began a friendship with fellow actor Robert Duvall on the set of "Gods and Generals," which led to Duvall producing and appearing in Cooper's film "Crazy Heart," which was heavily influenced by Duvall's "Tender Mercies" (1983).

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Unlike many actors turned filmmakers, Cooper quit acting in films after beginning to write and direct.

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Cooper originally wanted to tell the story of Merle Haggard, even following the musician around on tour, but couldn't get his life rights, due to legal entanglements with Haggard's numerous ex-wives. Instead, he optioned Thomas Cobb's then out-of-print novel, Crazy Heart, which told a fictional, but similar tale to Haggard's own life.

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"It’s funny, because I certainly am concerned and I’m mindful of length, but people always say, 'Wow, is this the director’s cut of the film?' When you see 'Crazy Heart' or 'Out of the Furnace,' it’s the director’s cut. I’m never forced to cut anything, never forced to use anything I don’t want to use." -- Coming Soon, September 15, 2015

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