TX troops get surprise visit from 'American Sniper' star

When service members and patients at a Texas military hospital got to preview the new film "American Sniper" last week, they had no idea that they'd also be getting a surprise visit from one of the film's stars.

Actor Bradley Cooper stopped by Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio and met with patients and staff members in the hospital's Institute of Surgical Research Burn Center Rehabilitation Gym. There, he signed movie posters and T-shirts that he handed out, according to hospital officials.

Afterward, he headed to the hospital's auditorium, where he was welcomed with cheers from the more than 250 service members and staff who had been watching "American Sniper."

In the film, Cooper plays Chris Kyle, the most lethal sniper in U.S. history. Kyle was killed at a North Texas gun range in 2013.

Cooper was joined at the hospital by Kyle's father, Wayne, and two veterans who were also in the movie, Jacob Schick and Bryan Anderson.

Cooper answered audience members' questions and talked about playing the challenging role, saying that it was Wayne's idea to visit the hospital.

"Making this movie was a life-changing experience," said Cooper. "I was terrified when I started. I didn't know if I could actually get to a place where I would believe that I was Chris [Kyle]."

After answering questions, Cooper went on to visit an amputee patient and sign more autographs.

Iraq war veteran Eddie Ray Routh was charged in Kyle's death. Routh's trial is set to begin next month.

FOX 4 interviewed Kyle in Jan. 2012 -- a little over a year before his death.


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