Bradley Cooper admits he was ‘terrified’ after landing big break on Sex and the City

Bradley Cooper in Sex and the City and at the Santa Barbara Film Festival

Bradley Cooper has reflected on how “terrified” he was when he landed his first big break as one of Carrie’s flings on Sex and the City.

That’s right, the 12-time Oscar-nominated actor, best known for his stellar performance in films like A Star Is Born, Silver Linings Playbook, and American Sniper, made his on-screen debut as Jake in season two of Sex and the City.

At the time, Cooper had been studying acting in New York City and working as a hotel doorman. When he eventually got the call to let him know he had booked a job as one of Carrie’s fleeting love interests, he was petrified.

Bradley Cooper at Santa Barbara Film Festival
Bradley Cooper remembers being ‘terrified’ after landing a role in Sex And The City. (Getty Images)

Reflecting on his big break during a Q&A session at the Santa Barbara Film Festival, Cooper told the audience: “I still remember it: I was Jake the downtown smoker.”

“I auditioned for it, and at that time I didn’t really realise that you could ever get the job,” he said, per People.

“Honestly, I thought that I had a job as a doorman at Morgans Hotel and then I was lucky enough to audition.”

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Cooper recalled that, when he got the call, he was “terrified” – particularly because he had lied during the audition process and told them he could drive a manual car.

“‘What do you mean I’m actually going to have to do it?’” he remembers asking. “I couldn’t drive a stick shift, so they sent me to Models Driving School and I was just terrified.

“I still messed it up, so they had somebody else drive the car and I just had to… pretend that we stopped.”

Before he was an Oscar-nominated actor, Bradley Cooper played Jake the downtown smoker in Sex and the City. (Christopher Polk/WWD via Getty Images)

When it came to the crunch, Cooper put on a great performance as Jake the party boy opposite Sarah Jessica Parker, who he described as “incredible”.

Sex and the City director Michael Patrick has talked about Cooper’s slip-up recently too, telling the And Just Like That… The Writers Room podcast: “Bradley Cooper said he could drive a stick to get the job because the character drove a Karmann Ghia.

“Four in the morning, another Friday outside 14th Street and I said, ‘Bradley, this is where you drive, you take off.’ And he goes, ‘I can’t drive a stick.’”

Thankfully, the SATC team was able to recalibrate at a moment’s notice and make the scene work without Cooper driving stick.

Sadly though, Jake and Carrie’s fling didn’t last long, after Jake came across the latest issue of New York Magazine, describing the trendy relationships writer as being a 30-something singleton.

But not long after Carrie ditched Jake, Cooper went on to make his feature film debut in Wet Hot American Summer and appear opposite Jennifer Garner in Alias.

More recently, Cooper wrote, directed, produced, and starred in the romantic biopic Maestro about composer Leonard Bernstein and his wife Felicia Montealegre.

The film is up for seven Oscars, including Best Actor and Best Original Screenplay.

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