- July 9, 1951
- Kansas City, Missouri, United States
- United States
Cooper born in July 9, 1951, in Kansas City, Missouri, the son of Charles and Mary Ann (Walton) Cooper. He has an older brother, Chuck Cooper (born 1948). His father was both a United States Air Force doctor and a cattleman, and his mother was a housewife. Both of his parents were from Texas. Cooper grew up in the suburbs of Kansas City and spent his summers at his family's cattle ranch, located about 15 miles west of Leavenworth, Kansas.
Cooper's early performances include John Sayles' 1987 film Matewan; the 1989 CBS-TV Western miniseries Lonesome Dove; the 1991 indie Western drama Thousand Pieces of Gold, and the 1992 ABC-TV docudrama Bed of Lies, opposite Susan Dey.
Cooper met his future wife, Marianne Leone, in 1979 at an acting class in New York City. On their first date, she helped him carry sheetrock up eight flights of stairs: "That's when I knew this was the girl for me."They married in July 1983. Their son, Jesse Lanier Cooper, was born three months prematurely in October 1987.
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