August 03, 2016 at 12:00 PM EDT

Bradley Cooper’s appearance in the audience at last week’s Democratic National Convention rankled some right-wing movie enthusiasts. Scores of his Republican fans (ahem… former fans) derided him for showing support for the Democratic party after having portrayed Navy SEAL Chris Kyle in American Sniper, with some even calling for a boycott of his films.

For his part, Cooper says he was taken aback by the intense response, and he spoke a little about his surprise on The Late Late Show with James Corden on Tuesday night.

“I was not expecting that,” Cooper said. “Republicans were up in arms that I was there watching the president speak.”

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Corden’s other guest, director Todd Phillips (War Dogs) compared the fans’ inability to separate the actor from a character he portrayed to “the mob being mad at [Robert] De Niro for being in The Intern.”

Cooper told Corden that he lives in Philadelphia, where the DNC took place, and that he attended the event because he wanted to take his mother to hear President Obama’s speech. “It was just unbelievable,” Cooper said. “It was probably one of the last times we’re gonna hear him speak. I think he was an incredible president.”

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Watch the full interview, in which Phillips recalls meeting Bill Clinton in Thailand, in the video above.

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