10 Actors We Still Can't Believe Are Oscar Nominees
10. Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook, American Hustle)
Prior to scoring his first Oscar nomination, Bradley Cooper was known primarily for his diverse array of TV work, and shooting to A-list fame overnight thanks to The Hangover franchise. What many of us didn't see coming, however, was that he'd end up partnering with David O. Russell for two consecutive projects, Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle, both of which have earned Cooper Academy Award nominations, in Leading and Supporting roles respectively. It's not that Cooper isn't talented by any means, but did anyone ever really peg him as a serious actor prior to these films? He's the good-looking, charming, affable one in The Hangover films, not a guy who gets nominated alongside Daniel-Day Lewis, Denzel Washington and Joaquin Phoenix, is he? Still, it's a testament not just to Cooper but also David O. Russell's extreme skill in directing actors, as I surely can't have been alone in assuming that Cooper's first nomination was going to be something of a novelty fluke. If Cooper is smart, he'll cling to the O. Russell camp for as long as possible. That said, I'm definitely intrigued to see what else Cooper can cook up away from tentpole action movies and broad comedies with other directors.
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