Gary Cooper


May 21, 2022

Gary Cooper, born Frank James Cooper (Helena, Montana, May 7, 1901 - Los Angeles, CA, May 13, 1961) is a two-time Oscar-winning American actor who has become famous for his natural, authentic, and intelligible portrayals. His career lasted from 1925 to 1961, and during those thirty-six years he played a major role in eighty-four feature films. He was one of the leading American movie stars from the sacrifice of the silent film era to the end of the classic Hollywood golden age. His acting performance won the favor of both male and female viewers, all in a way that embraced most of the great film genres. Cooper was able to show his own individuality in the role he played, so it seemed natural and authentic on the screen. During his long acting career, he portrayed the ideal American hero. At the beginning of his film career, he was still a statistician and equestrian stuntman, but was soon entrusted with increasingly serious roles. The fame was made in the 1929 sound film The Virginian, in which the main character played a western hero. In the early 1930s, he played additional heroic roles in adventure films and dramas, such as The Farewell to Arms in 1932 and The Lives of a Bengal Lancer in 1935. At the culmination of his film career, the new type of intrepid hero, the all-conquering average man, was personified by Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936), Meet John Doe (1941), and Sergeant York ( 1941) and The Pride of the Yankees (1942). He was entrusted with more mature roles in the post-war years, such as The Fountainhead (1949) and High Noon (1952). In his last works, he no longer played action heroes, as the notable films of his era, Friendly Persuasion (1956) and The Man of the West (1958), sought more and more reconciliation. From the beginning of her career, she was a favorite of women: she had a romantic relationship with leading actresses such as Clara Bow and Lupe Vélez. Still, he married actress Veronica Balfe in 1933. They also had a daughter, but their marriage to Patricia Neal was interrupted for nearly three years. Their common interests formed the basis of his twenty-year friendship with American writer Ernest Hemingway. He also knew several famous film personalities as close friends, including film director Howard Hawks, film actors Joel McCrea and James Stewart. He has been nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor five times in his career, two of which he won for his roles in the films Sergeant York and Afternoon, and in 1961 he won the Lifetime Achievement Award. For twenty-three consecutive years, he was among the ten best-known male film actors and the highest-paid actor for eighteen years. In 1999, he was selected by the American Film Institute as one of the biggest Hollywood movie stars of the past hundred years, ranking 11th on the men’s list.


He was born in Helena, Montana, on May 7, 1901, on the Eleventh Avenue, at 730. His family is of English descent, and his father, Charles Henry Cooper (1865–1946), emigrated to the United States from Bedfordshire, where he was a farmer. In his new homeland he became a lawyer and then a judge. His mother, Alice Brazier (1873–1967), was born in Kent. In 1906, his father bought it as a family estate on Seven-Bar-Nine, eighty miles north of Helena, near the Craig River and along the Missouri River.