After the success of Bradley Cooper‘s directorial debut, A Star is Born, he comes with another masterpiece Maestro. Once more, he takes on the role of director and leads himself in portraying a intricate character—a troubled and brilliant musical figure. Despite Cooper now stands among the film industry’s most acclaimed directors, he remains mindful of the challenges actors face when confronted with rejection.
At The Hollywood Reporter’s Directors Roundtable Cooper shared that Michael Mann’s inspiring rejection letter motivated him to send letters to every actor who tries out for his directorial projects.
Cooper detailed his audition experience for Public Enemies, Mann’s 2009 period film featuring Johnny Depp as notorious gangster John Dillinger and Christian Bale as the FBI agent on his trail during his last days. Although Cooper didn’t get a role in the movie, Mann penned him a supportive note that became a cherished keepsake for him in the years that followed.
“I’ve been an actor for so many years, still an actor. And one thing I learned from [Michael Mann] was, I put myself on tape for ‘Public Enemies’ years ago, and I didn’t get it,” Cooper said. “And he wrote me a letter. I got a letter from Michael Mann saying, ‘Thank you for auditioning, and I see something in you.’ I kept that on my bookshelf for so many years.”
“You never know the impact you have. I learned from that,” he added. “Anybody that auditions, I always write them. And that’s because of you.”
Maestro is out in theatres now.