Steven Spielberg to direct "American Sniper"

Best Director nominee Steven Spielberg arrives on the red carpet for the 85th Annual Academy Awards on February 24, 2013 in Hollywood, California. AFP PHOTO/FREDERIC J. BROWN (Photo credit should read FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images) FREDERIC J. BROWN

Steven Spielberg has his sights set on his next project - a movie about former Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle, who is considered to be the deadliest sniper in U.S. military history.

A spokeswoman for DreamWorks Studios says Spielberg will direct Bradley Cooper in an adaptation of the best-selling book "American Sniper."

"Spread" screenwriter Jason Hall wrote the script based on the autobiography of Kyle, who was killed in February at a Texas gun range. An Iraq war veteran he was trying to help deal with post-trauma stress is charged with the killings.

At the time of his death, Kyle was working on another book, "American Gun: A History of the U.S. in Ten Firearms."

An early 2014 release date is being eyed for the film, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The film will be a co-production of DreamWorks and Warner Bros.