Bradley Cooper's 'American Sniper' Comes With Touching Promise to Late Navy SEAL (VIDEO)

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Bradley Cooper was on a mission to bring Navy SEAL Chris Kyle's story to the big screen. Kyle, described as the most lethal sniper in American military history, wrote an autobiography, American Sniper, and Cooper went to him personally when he wanted to adapt the book as a film. "It was a very quick conversation," Cooper told USA Today. "But I did tell him how serious I was about making this movie. And he should just know that whatever fears he had about Hollywood, to just put them aside and trust me. That I was going to do everything I could to tell this story."

Kyle agreed to let Cooper and Clint Eastwood, who's directing the film, buy the rights to his book, but sadly, before the movie was finished, Kyle and a friend were shot and killed at a shooting range in Texas by an unwell Marine vet, who's currently on trial. Cooper is now on more of a mission than ever to make sure every aspect of Kyle's story is 100% true.

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Cooper spoke with Kyle's friends and family to find out more about him and what he'd been through, and, understandably, he feels a pressure to remain faithful to the kind of person he was. "I had to do right by him and his family, there was really no choice," the actor said. "You're sitting across the dining-room table talking to this person's father and mother. And his children and wife are there. And he's passed away. Knowing that they are putting all of their stories in your hands and the responsibly of that, it's actually unique."

Cooper immersed himself in Kyle's life as much as he could in order to prepare for the role. In addition to gaining 40 pounds, he trained with Navy SEALs and worked with Kevin "Dauber" Lacz, who was Kyle's partner during his final two tours.

Hopefully, the film will remain as true to Kyle's story as possible without it being "Hollywooded up," as this is what most of America will come to know and learn of him. Cooper said that he could care less about awards or box office success; he just wants Kyle's loved ones to be happy with the finished product. No pressure there.

The movie comes out in limited-release on Christmas Day. Here's the first preview:

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Image via Warner Bros. UK/YouTube

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