Dominic Cooper: Like father, like ...
While Dominic Cooper has received rave reviews for much of his previouswork in films like “The History Boys” and “An Education,” none of themhave necessarily been from the actor himself — until now.
While Dominic Cooper has received rave reviews for much of his previous work in films like “The History Boys” and “An Education,” none of them have necessarily been from the actor himself — until now. “I am for the first time ever very proud of it. You so rarely are,” the 33-year-old British actor says of “The Devil’s Double,” his new film. “You look at stuff that you do and you just pick holes in it. You go, ‘It’s all right. It’s just me, being an idiot on the screen, farting around. I can’t believe I got paid for that. Ridiculous.’”
In “The Devil’s Double,” Cooper takes on the real-life roles of Uday Hussein — son of Saddam — and Latif, an Iraqi soldier pressed into service as Uday’s body double. “It was difficult doing the third character, which was him impersonating Uday,” he says. “Getting the balance there and not immediately assuming he was any good at it — why would he be any good at it, pretending to be somebody else? What we do in our ridiculous profession, why would a guy who was a soldier and a good man be able to throw himself into impersonating this horrific monster?”
A bigger challenge for Cooper was playing opposite himself, a feat accomplished by filming him as Uday first for the most part, then filming the scene again as Latif, acting around what he’d just done. “I’d rush off and get changed and then be looking at these random spots and trying to remember the performance where it was,” he says. “I had the sound of me in my ear doing that performance — awfully off-putting, as well, hearing yourself do a performance, going, ‘Oh God, that was wrong! That was horrible,’ and then trying to do a performance opposite it.”