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10 New Things We Learned About 'American Hustle:' De Niro Didn't Recognize Christian Bale, Why Bradley Cooper Curled His Hair & More

Photo of Paula Bernstein By Paula Bernstein | Indiewire December 11, 2013 at 9:25AM

We attended the "American Hustle" press conference and learned these 10 new things about the film, which will be released on Friday.
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American Hustle

5. Why Bradley Cooper had to curl his hair to play Richie DiMaso.

"The spirit that David was creating was all informed by this idea that he's a child really. He's a young boy. He, Richie, not David O. Russell! He wanted me (as Richie) to look different, maybe I'd be a bit unrecognizable. We thought maybe curly hair. Then David thought he (Richie) curls his own hair because he wants to look different. He wants to be like these guys who he thinks are archetypes of men to him." -- Bradley Cooper

7. Christian Bale thinks acting is like dreaming - and it's addictive.

"Everybody at night, they dream and they tend to go a little insane and that's acceptable because we're dreaming. Acting is a little bit of that for me, like dreaming in the waking state. You get to study people and you go insane about something and it's expected -- and the more that you are (insane), the better it is. I find that very addictive." -- Christian Bale

8. To get into her character, Jennifer Lawrence enters a meditative state. 

"Acting is a study of people. It's all of these things that I've been doing since I was little that were always useless in Kentucky, just watching people and being able to figure out a person and what kind of person are you playing? How do they move? How do they walk? Between action and cut, it's almost like meditating in a weird way. Anything that you're feeling -- if I'm cold between action and cut, I'm not. If I'm in physical pain between action and cut, I'm not. I'm in a completely different frame of mind and it's a high." -- Jennifer Lawrence

9. De Niro signed on (in an uncredited part of Victor Tellegio), in part, because he liked the idea of a mobster who spoke Arabic.

"De Niro is extremely meticulous when he's really passionate about something and we had endless conversations. He loved the fact that this man (Tellegio) spoke Arabic -- which happens to be one of the true things in the story. Truth is crazier than fiction, but there was a mobster who spoke Arabic. He (Tellegio) was based on a collection of gangsters. He (De Niro) was really into meticulously constructing this guy. He wanted to do something he'd never done before." -- David O. Russell

10. Though the original script was based on actual events, Russell always knew he wanted to fictionalize it.

"Where is fact? Where is fiction? I'm making cinema, so I'm going to tell the best myths, the best stories, the best operas from an amalgamation of true events that inspire me and true characters and fictional imagination...I'm not doing historical drama. The first script that Eric (Warren Singer) did was historical drama. Eric wrote a beautiful script that was more true to the events, but that's for another director to make." -- David O. Russell


This article is related to: David O. Russell, American Hustle, Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence





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