RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A photo captures the meeting between former real seal team sniper John McGuire and ‘American Sniper’ star and oscar nominee Bradley Cooper.
“I think he did a great job. I actually had the chance to meet him over new years up in New York. He’s very humble, down to earth guy.”
McGuire, who has been profiled here on 8News several times over the years for his SEAL team physical training, served 10 years in the U.S. Navy.
He says the movie ‘American Sniper,’ which chronicles the life of Chris Kyle — the deadliest sniper in American military history — is right on the mark.
“It’s about as realistic as Hollywood can get,” McGuire said. “A movie can never compare to the real deal, but I thought it was very entertaining, but also serious. A good representation of what our troops go through.”
The film has connected with viewers racking up more than $300 million in ticket sales.
“I didn’t think it was one of these glorifying combat Hollywood movies… It showed the challenges,” McGuire said.
“War is hell. It showed… it’s not just the guy on the battlefield but also the folks back home supporting the troops.”
Not only does it give movie-goers a front line view of combat, but it also follows Kyle home as he struggles to reconnect with his family during his four different tours of Iraq.
McGuire says those scenes hit very close to home for him.
“My daughter ran into the kitchen crying because she did’t even know who I was.”
Some have criticized the film for not addressing the issues that got America into that war in Iraq. McGuire says he’s happy it’s not a movie about politics and policies but about the troops on the ground.
As the owner of a physical training center that brings some of that SEAL team training to the general public, McGuire is impressed how Cooper put on 40 pounds of muscle for the role and how the actor approached the role… Much like a sniper might approach the enemy.
“That work ethic is what it takes to be a sniper. Attention to detail, almost obsessive compulsive. Every detail counts.”
“In talking with Bradley Cooper, did you invite him to come do one of your training sessions?” 8News anchor Morgan Dean asked McGuire.
“I invited him to come do a workout! Maybe some day,” McGuire said.