Born May 7, 1901 in Helena Montana, Frank James Cooper also known as The Montana Mule started his education in Dunstable School in England. He also attended schools in Helena Montana and Iowa College in Grinnell Iowa. He acted during high school and college and his stage performances received rave reviews.
Gary Cooper had an understated acting style that gave him success in High Noon, City Streets, Mr. Deeds Goes to Town and Pride of the Yankees. Cooper acted in more than one hundred films and continued acting up until his death in 1961. He received five Academy Award nominations for Best Actor and won twice for High Noon and Sergeant York. In 1961 he received an Honorary Award from the Academy.
In 1925 Cooper worked as an extra in the film industry and changed his name to Gary. Cooper made several silent films and his first sound picture The Virginian in 1929 made him a star. Cooper's box-office appeal was further enhanced in A Farewell to Arms (1932) and Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936). Cooper turned down the role of Rhett Butler in Gone With the Wind stating this movie would be a tremendous flop. Gary Cooper worked with Ingrid Bergman in For Whom the Bell Tolls and stared with Patricia Neal in The Foutainhead (1949).
Cooper's career continued almost to the end of his life with The Garden of Evil in 1954, Vera Cruz, Friendly Persuasion, and Love in the Afternoon. His last film was the Naked Edge in 1961 filmed in England. Cooper was working on an NBC documentary The Real West when he passed away on May 13, 1961.
He has a star on the Hollywood walk of fame, one child, and was married to Veronica Cooper from 1933 until his death in 1961. The given name Gary became popular from the 1930s until today due to Gary Cooper.