An already-planned film is now on the fast track after an untimely death.
In an interview with NPR on Thursday, Bradley Cooper announced plans to ramp up development on a big-screen biopic about former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, author of the best-selling autobiography American Sniper, in the wake of his tragic murder last week.
Kyle—considered the deadliest sniper in American military history with 160 confirmed kills—was shot and killed on Saturday, at a shooting range allegedly at the hands of a fellow veteran suffering from posttraumatic stress syndrome, Eddie Ray Routh, whom he was trying to help.
Cooper, who's become a mental health advocate thanks to his Oscar-nominated role in Silver Linings Playbook, told Fresh Air's Terry Gross that he and producers were set to meet later that day to talk about, "number one, what we can do for his family and number two, how we can speed up the process and really try to make this movie."
"His story, first of all, needs to be told," said the thesp. "And it's also relevant on two fronts. One, gun control, and two, the needs to address this—the many soldiers that are coming back with posttraumatic stress disorder."
The film would be based on Kyle's book, American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History.
No word yet on a director, but Cooper, who aside from playing Kyle will also serve as a coproducer on the flick, confirmed that screenwriter Jason Hall is due to deliver a first draft of the script this week.
As it happened, Cooper revealed he and Hall were "about to dive into" the project when they learned about the sad news.
"Thursday I was at Walter Reed Hospital meeting with veterans who have posttraumatic stress disorder, among many other ailments, and then all of a sudden I heard this thing and I just couldn't believe it," recalled the actor.
Cooper added that another reason they're fast-tracking the movie is because he's 38 and not getting any younger.