Bradley Cooper

"It's not like I sit back with a cigar on Monday morning and go through the scripts that have been offered – no, that's not the case," says Bradley Cooper in response to comments that The Hangover made him a huge success.

But the truth is the 2009 stag night-gone-wrong flick was a gamechanger. He manged to lose a bridegroom, gain a baby and down record quantities of cocktails with a goofy charm that made men admire his style and women swoon. Never had a night of high jinks in Vegas been so profitable.

His pay packet for the first film in what ended up being a trilogy was a respectable $600,000. By his second Hangover the actor needed a wheelbarrow to take his earnings home, receiving a cool $5,000,000.

Born on January 5, 1975, the second of two children to stockbroker Charles Cooper and his wife, Bradley grew up in Pennsylvania. He was educated at Washington's Georgetown University, followed by the prestigious Actors Studio Drama School.

His first roles came in small screen fare such as Sex and the City, Alias, Nip/Tuck and Kitchen Confidential.

The Owen Wilson vehicle Wedding Crashers in 2005 provided a move to the big screen and his scene-stealing turn as a tediously high achieving jock.

Other standouts on the Cooper CV are two movies opposite Robert De Niro – thriller Limitless and the critically acclaimed off beat comedy Silver Linings Playbook, for which he received an Oscar nomination.

Bradley's role in American Hustle also generated Oscar buzz, bringing the screen pin up his second Academy Award nomination.

Just over a decade before he'd been a student tentatively interviewing his hero Robert during an actors' masterclass.

Now, the blue-eyed boy from Pennsylvania was officially the Sexiest Man Alive, according to a leading US publication.

The voters of the title were no doubt influenced by his cooking abilities (he learnt to make handmade pasta from his grandma) and his language skills (he spent six months in France and was able to conduct interviews for The Hangover in French).

As befits a man of that title he has squired many of Hollywood's most intriguing ladies. A marriage to actress Jennifer Esposito ended after one year. Bradley has also dated Renee Zellweger and Zoe Saldana.

In 2013, he began stepping out with Suki Waterhouse, a British model 17 years his junior.

While everyone is fascinated by his love life, the heart throb laughs off his sex symbol status. He regularly asks his mother Gloria to be his plus one to big awards ceremonies and even invited her to move in with him after the death of his father, telling interviewers: "I love having her. I wouldn't have it any other way."
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