Bradley Cooper Applauds 'American Sniper' Debate at Oscar Luncheon

Bradley Cooper

Bradley Cooper opened up at the annual Oscar Nominees Luncheon; other nominees like Eddie Redmayne and Patricia Arquette shared funny and insightful career highlights.

Bradley Cooper believes the debate surrounding American Sniper is a good thing; Eddie Redmayne's Golden Globe was stopped during baggage check at the airport; and Patricia Arquette felt like a grown-up at Disneyland when she heard she was nominated for an Oscar.

These are just some of the insights and anecdotes shared by the Best Actress and Best Actor hopefuls before they entered the annual Oscar Nominees Luncheon on Monday afternoon at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Reese Witherspoon and nominees from all 24 categories caught up with each other at the luncheon, where they candidly shared memories from working on their highly acclaimed films of the year.

Check out these top moments from the press room below.

1. Patricia Arquette felt like she was in an elongated dream when she was nominated.

Boyhood's Arquette said it took two days for the nomination announcement to finally hit her. She said she had woken up from the "surreal dream" when she was at a restaurant with her boyfriend. "I grabbed this kid next to me and said, 'I got nominated for the Academy Award.' He looked at me and said, 'No you didn't.' I was like, 'Google it. Let's check it.' My boyfriend came back from the bathroom like, 'What's going on?'"

2. Michael Keaton has learned what to toss in his acceptance speeches.

Birdman actor Michael Keaton realized a lot of things don't matter anymore in speeches. "You really don't care about a lot of things anymore. Just f— it," said Keaton. He said he didn't think he would ever get a chance to thank his family like he did at the Golden Globes.

"I thought who knows what's going to happen within the next 10 minutes, so I want to get that done and where I came from." Keaton added that what's most important in his speeches now is speaking on what's true and authentic. "You just really don't care anymore what people think. I never want to look back and think I was kind of a bullshitter."

3. Reese Witherspoon wants to create more strong female roles.

Wild Best Actress nominee Witherspoon said that the industry has taught her that she has to take action when it comes to making the roles she would like to see in film. "I started my production company two years ago because I saw six of my favorite actresses fighting over a really crappy role in a movie," she said. "I thought we deserved better. I wanted to develop material that had strong female leads and it’s been such a great year. The critics have been so supportive."

Witherspoon also commented that she hasn't had time to focus on facials or beauty projects for the big day as she has been shooting her next film, with Sofia Vergara. "I have bruises up and down my knees from fighting with Sofia in this fight sequence so that’s basically how I prepare," she added. "Wrestling with Sophia Vergara. It’s actually good for your skin and a way to get your muscles going. She’s very tough."

4. Oscar season has made Felicity Jones incredibly nervous but her favorite moment is meeting Patti Smith.

"I got to meet Patti Smith who I'm a huge fan of," remarked Jones. "I have to say I think that may be my favorite moment of the whole thing."

When Jones was working on The Theory of Everything, she exclaimed that meeting Jane Hawking felt more of an audition than a simple visit for dinner, but she felt she gained her approval. "She gave me this lovely look when I left her house," said Jones. "As I was leaving they [Jane Hawking and her husband Jonathan] were sort of waving me off. There was just something in her eye that I felt, OK hopefully she feels relaxed and she can entrust me with her life story. It was more of a look than a piece of information."

5. Foxcatcher Best Actor nominee Steve Carell was up at 5:30 a.m. the day of the Oscar nomination announcements.

"I was up at 5:30 with a cup of coffee sitting downstairs in the darkness," said Carell. "My wife, I didn’t know she had woken up too. She was watching in our bedroom. So my name was announced, I ran upstairs to tell her and she was running downstairs, so we met at the top of the stairs and we were just jumping up and down for about 10 minutes. I’ll just never forget that." 

Carell added that his dark role in Foxcatcher has influenced him to pursue more highly challenging roles whether in a drama or comedy. "What I take away most from it was that it was incredibly scary and that was good," added Carell. "If it has any sort of impact career wise I want to do things that scare me a little bit more because I think good things can come out of it."

6. Eddie Redmayne's Best Actor Golden Globe was stopped during baggage check.

“I saw the bag go through and I saw the woman stop the thing and then go close up on this weird shaped thing," said The Theory of Everything's Redmayne. "She was like, 'I think it’s an award or something.' I was praying that they would make me open it up. That was very special moment. The guy was like, 'Is this real?' "

Redmayne also added that one of his favorite moments from Oscar season has been catching up with Julianne Moore since acting with her on Savage Grace. "It was at a time in which some of the financiers didn’t want to hire me and Julianne Moore fought incredibly hard for me," he added. "One of the loveliest things about the past few months is being able to see Julie again and to thank her for taking a huge risk on me."

7. Robert Duvall does not think he will win Best Supporting Actor for The Judge.

“I’m not going to win it. That’s OK though," exclaimed Duvall. The oldest supporting actor nominee in Oscar history said he's simply happy to be among the fresh young talent. “It’s been five years since I could fit in this suit," said Duvall. "I’ve been working out because I want to be able to keep up with everybody. The young actors today for me are better than ever. We learn from each other."

8. Marion Cotillard wanted Two Days, One Night to be nominated under the Best Foreign language film category.

"When we didn’t make the shortlist I was very sad because it was the first time the Dardenne brothers were chosen by Belgium to represent their country for Academy Awards so that was an amazing opportunity," said Cotillard. The actress expressed that although the news upset her, the Best Actress nomination revived her dreams all over again. Cotillard also noted that beer solves everything when you're trying to move on with your day after filming emotional, depressing scenes.

"You drink beer," said Cotillard. "Belgium baby.”

9. Julianne Moore feels more comfortable now when she comes to the Oscars.

Although Still Alice's Moore still feels Oscar season is like one big press junket, she says she's more comfortable than before. She's also glad she can wear more fashionable clothing compared to the days when she was pregnant with her children. "I had just had a baby," said Moore about coming to the Oscars when she was pregnant. "I got out of the car and my publicist Stephen Huvane met me at the car. I decided to wear a day coat, this kind of boxy coat. He said, ‘Oh my gosh, we’ve got to get you away from that intellectual fashion. That’s ridiculous.' I feel more comfortable now. My children are older so I don’t have to wear something so misshaped."

10. Emma Stone has Birdman flashbacks while she’s currently in the play Cabaret.

"Alejandro [Gonzalez Inarritu] keeps asking me if it feels like I’m in Birdman walking through the back hallways of studio 54, which it actually does," joked Stone. "A lot of the people that come backstage after the show are like, 'We’re in Birdman! Wild!' "

11. Bradley Cooper is glad American Sniper is sparking a heated discussion.

The actor exclaimed he had no idea that American Sniper would spark such controversy. "Any discussion that sort of sheds light to the plight of the soldiers and the men and women in the armed services, for that discussion to occur is fantastic,” said Cooper.

The 87th Academy Awards air Feb. 22 on ABC.