Grantland Says Bradley Cooper Is “The Smartest Star in Hollywood”

We already knew that Philly homeboy Bradley Cooper had a very strong claim to being the sexiest man alive. Now Grantland looks at how Cooper is shaping his career after the Oscar nomination for Silver Linings Playbook and declares Cooper to be the “smartest star in Hollywood.” Yes, the same Cooper who just starred in The Hangover Part III.

Because in terms of career management, Cooper has, in the last year, emerged as one of the only youngish leading men outside the Affleck-Clooney-Damon-Ocean’s orbit who knows exactly how to maximize his opportunities. The series of professional decisions Cooper has made since entering theSilver Linings Playbook phase of his career add up to a giant insurance policy: a plan to broaden his appeal, move forward as an actor, and stay so busy that he will never even have to hear the pitch for a movie with the words “Part IV” in the title. His current schedule is a perfect demonstration of how to use a single unexpectedly large success to trade up.

The site then says that coming movies with David O’ Russell and Cameron Crowe should help cement Cooper’s reputation as a “serious” actor, and that his overall slate of projects suggests a career on the rise:

The brilliant thing about setting all of this up so quickly is that, even if only, say, two of the six movies above really work, Cooper still comes out ahead, because male movie stars in their prime are almost always forgiven their bad calls as long as they make good ones with some regularity. That forgiveness will extend to The Hangover Part III, despite some inevitable “Hmmm, maybe he’s not a star” chin-tugging in the wake of this weekend’s disappointing box office.3 No such luck, Cooper haters. The guy has his game mapped into 2015. You will not escape him. And if he hasn’t won you over yet, he has now used intelligent calculation and risk assessment to give himself every possible chance to do so.