Cooper, 43, and Shayk, 32, welcomed daughter Lea de Seine in March 2017, and in a new interview about Cooper’s directorial debut with the film A Star is Born, NPR asked the actor how fatherhood has changed him.
“Well, I’ve been opened up to a world of children’s music, that’s for sure,” Cooper quipped before turning more introspective.
“I spent about 15 years going from movie to movie to movie,” he explained. “And then I hit 39 and I stopped and I said, ‘What do I really want to do?’ I want to tell Joseph Merrick’s story in [the Broadway revival] The Elephant Man. So I did that for a year. Then this story came to me, A Star Is Born, and then I spent the next four years doing that … So I guess having a child, and having a family of my own — which is a miracle and something I’ve always dreamt of — has opened me up even more, I guess, to the day, and to be present.”
The four-time Oscar nominee also told NPR he draws upon his late father, who died in 2011 after battling cancer, as a source of inspiration and as a role model. In fact, he and his A Star Is Born costar Lady Gaga bonded over their happy upbringings.
“Here’s the other thing that connected [Gaga] and myself right away, is that we were very, very loved as children,” he said. “And when I meet people that have had that similar upbringing, I can just see it in them. And that’s the thing I want my daughter to have — I just always want her to feel loved.”
A Star is Born hits theaters on Friday, October 5.
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