Pitt, 60, paid homage to Cooper, 49, on Thursday by giving the Maestro star the highest prize for outstanding performance of the year at the Santa Barbara Film Festival for his role as Leonard Bernstein in the biopic. He was a director of that biopic and also co-written it.
When Pitt made an appearance at Santa Barbara’s Arlington Theatre to hand off the Oscar to the Oscar nominee, he made light of the fact that the two had a “couple of things in common,” such as “being a movie superstar and also a name.”
He continued by saying that after seeing Cooper’s performance in The Hangover, he was certain there was something unique about Coopehat Phil Cooper is enjoying Alan Galifianakis’s lack of regard the more disrespectful he becomes. It is nuanced. I know this sounds weird, but I was watching that, and I know no one else would have brought it to the table, even if it’s frequently off to the side of the screen, but it’s there and fascinating. It was also something new. Pitt remarked, “I knew this guy was going to be around.”
Pitt then discussed Cooper’s 2018 feature film debut as director, A Star Is Born, for which the actor also authored the screenplay and acted.
He continued, “It’s a film that’s been produced a few times, it’s been made well, so the bar is so high, and yet he’s able to put forth in an act where he’s able to play drunk when he breaks down and still keep an eye on the crew to see the time when to know that he’s got the tape and you can move on.”
“To do that well is nothing short of perfect,” Pitt said during the gathering while DAOU Vineyards wine was served to attendees.
Pitt concluded his remarks by expressing his optimism for Cooper’s performance at the forthcoming Academy Awards. Maestro is a nominee for seven awards, including Best Picture, Best Actress for Mulligan, Best Actor for Cooper, and Best Original Screenplay (co-written with Josh Singer).