Bradley Cooper was inspired to pursue acting by The Elephant Man. The actor will soon make his debut as the title character in the upcoming Broadway revival, about a disfigured man whose humanity and intelligence are overlooked due to his appearance.
'It was the reason why I wanted to become an actor, because of David Lynch’s movie'
And he vividly remembers how the 1980 film starring John Hurt ignited his desire.
“It was the reason why I wanted to become an actor, because of David Lynch’s movie,” he said on US morning programme Today, explaining those feelings were only heightened when he discovered the stage work.
“And then I discovered it was a play, and I did it for my thesis in grad school,” he added.
Bradley previously performed in the play at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts back in 2012.
The Elephant Man is scheduled to open on Broadway November 7.
Bradley’s co-star, Patricia Clarkson, called his transformation into the title character “quite breathtaking”.
"It's an incredibly profound experience to watch this man we’ve all fallen in love with, Joseph Merrick, that we love deeply," Clarkson said. "You watch this journey, and it’s very funny and incredibly heartbreaking at the same time."
Bradley also described how he transitions into the role.
“For me, it just starts with the breath and then it sort of just happens,” he said.
“A lot of it is what it is to be human," co-star Alessandro Nivola added, "because this man is so disfigured that he almost looks like an animal and has been treated like an animal all of his life.”
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