If there’s one thing we can expect of director Christopher Nolan, it’s that any film he devises will create something of a media frenzy upon hitting cinemas. From Interstellar to Dunkirk and Tenet, Nolan has consistently delivered films that transcend beyond the big screen and become significant events in the cultural fabric that is pop culture. These are films that don’t so much garner a theatrical release as they do a global event; a release day that sounds around the world and sees audiences flock to their local theatres in droves. Known for his incredible cinematograph and matching such brilliance with an emotional score, Nolan has become a director that attracts not only Hollywood’s biggest stars, but also the world’s most intriguing stories and his latest feature proves just that with Oppenheimer.
As many will be aware, J. Robert Oppenheimer changed the world when he created the atomic bomb. With the release of the latest trailer, Nolan depicts Oppenheimer as a wary man, questioning whether such a breakthrough in science can be trusted in the world. “We imagine a future and our imaginings are horrifies. They would fear it until they understand it, and they won’t understand it until they’ve used it,” says Cillian Murphy as Oppenheimer in the trailer. “Theory will take you only so far…I don’t know if we can be trusted with such a weapon. But I have no choice.”
The film features an all-star cast, with Cillian Murphy of Peaky Blindersplaying the titular role of Oppenheimer himself. Emily Blunt will star alongside Murphy as his biologist wife, Kitty, while rounding out the cast are Matt Damon, Robert Downey Jr., Florence Pugh, Benny Safdie, Michael Angarano, Josh Hartnett, Rami Malek, Kenneth Branagh, Dane DeHaan, Alden Ehrenreich and Matthew Modine.
Speaking about the role, Murphy told The Guardian, “I’m interested in the man and what [inventing the atomic bomb] does to the individual,” adding that he did “an awful lot of reading” in preparation for the role. “The mechanics of it, that’s not really for me – I don’t have the intellectual capability to understand them. But these contradictory characters are fascinating. Tommy Shelby’s a complete contradiction, too. People identify with that because we all walk around with these contradictory ideas coexisting in our heads.”
Judging by the trailer, Oppenheimer is set to be as big a spectacle as any, with Nolan saying: “It’s a story of immense scope and scale. And one of the mot challenging projects I’ve ever taken on in terms of the scale of it, and in terms of encountering the breadth of Oppenheimer’s story.”
He added, “There were big, logistical challenges, big practical challenges. But I had an extraordinary crew, and they really stepped up. It will be a while before we’re finished. But certainly, as I watch the results come in, and as I’m putting the film together, I’m thrilled with what my team has been able to achieve.”
The film is scheduled for release July 21, 2023.