Bradley Cooper Wanted to 'Kill Myself' While Filming 'Alias'
The "American Hustle" star tells GQ that he also considered quitting acting while struggling early in his career.
Bradley Cooper says he hit a low point while filming Alias more than a decade ago.
The actor -- who would go on to become an A-lister thanks to his breakout role in 2009's The Hangover -- says he became frustrated and disillusioned while working as a struggling actor on Alias when his role on the J.J. Abrams TV series was reduced.
“I would only work three days a week," the American Hustle star says in the January issue of GQ. "And then for the second season, I got even more sidelined. I was like, ‘Ugh.’ And then next thing you know, I was like, ‘I want to f---ing kill myself.’ ”
Despite having no other job lined up, he asked to be written off the show, against the advice of his friends and handlers.
“J.J. was like, ‘OK,’ " Cooper says. "He probably would’ve fired me, anyway.”
He even thought about quitting acting entirely: "At some point, you have to come to terms with 'The business just doesn’t want you,' you know what I mean?"
It also didn't help that Cooper was struggling with drug and alcohol use, an issue that he's opened up about previously.
"If I continued it, I was really going to sabotage my whole life," he tells GQ, adding: "I think work was getting f---ed up. … The one thing that I've learned in life is the best thing I can do is embrace who I am and then do that to the fullest extent, and then whatever happens, happens. The more steps I do to not do that, the farther I am away from fulfilling any potential I would have."
After he got sober, he began taking roles in TV series like Nip/Tuck and Kitchen Confidential and appeared in Wedding Crashers -- he describes his character as "a f---ing tyrant" -- and in All About Steve opposite Sandra Bullock.
"I was doing these movies, and I got to meet Sandra Bullock and meet these people and work with them. And I’m sober, and I’m like, ‘Oh, I’m actually myself. And I don’t have to put on this air to be somebody else, and this person still wants to work with me? Oh, what the fuck is that about?’ I was rediscovering myself in this workplace, and it was wonderful."
While he said he wasn't creatively satisfied, he was "grateful and happy to be working."