Following a heated bidding war that led to his next film landing at Universal, Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer has not only found its star to play the titular role but set a date on when audiences can see his next movie. Universal Pictures and Nolan’s banner Syncopy have confirmed Cillian Murphy to star in Oppenheimer as scientist J. Robert Oppenheimer and also announced that the film will bow on July 21, 2023, a slot typically saved for Nolan films in the past.
I was pretty vocal a few weeks back about how I feel about this project for Nolan. I'm happy that he is doing a project that he wants to do, but I'm still not sure if this is how he wins the WB breakup. It's just not as flashy a concept as I assumed he would rebound with! Like I said in that article, you wana rebound with an IG model that you take wayyyyy too many IG stories with to let the world know that you are definitely ok and not dead inside. This is like rebounding by getting into a really interesting hobby. Not a bad thing, per se, just not the typical unhealthy rebound we would expect.
I will say that having Murphy officially on board definitely makes it move. He is obviously a fantastic actor and a frequent Nolan collaborator. What makes me even more excited is that even more of the gang is back together:
The film will begin production in early 2022 and will be shot on a combination of IMAX® 65mm and 65mm large-format film for the highest image quality and reunites Nolan with some of his leading collaborators, including Roven, director of photography Hoyte Van Hoytema, editor Jennifer Lame and composer Ludwig Göransson (Tenet, Black Panther, Creed).
The fact that this is being pumped out on IMAX tells us that this is something far beyond a simple bopic. Having Hoyte Van Hoytema(Interstellar, Dunkirk, The Fighter, Tenet, Ad Astra) on board as a DP is huge because he is a stud. Jennifer Lame has been an editor on some incredible stuff like Marriage Story, Hereditary, Midsommar, Manchester by the Sea and more. And Goransson is already on the radar as the movie world's next biggest composer. All these elements make me thing we are getting something way grander in scale than was initially thought. Maybe an aspect ratio change as the bomb goes off? I'm getting chills just thinking about it.
For those of you maybe not super familair with Oppenheimer, he was a brilliant scientist helped create the atomic bomb while director of the Los Alamos lab. He was also the son of a wealthy German immigrant, and used his inheritance to fund anti-fascist organizations after the rise of Hitler in his ancestral homeland. After WWII, he was advisor to the Atomic Energy Commission before having his security clearance revoked during the communist witch hunts of the 50's. In the years after creating the bomb, he showed a lot of regret for his role in the project. Not specifically for its use to end WWII, but because of the arms race that threatened our planets existence. I think most people are familiar with him making this quote:
"We knew the world would not be the same. A few people laughed, a few people cried. Most people were silent. I remembered the line from the Hindu scripture, the Bhagavad Gita; Vishnu is trying to persuade the Prince that he should do his duty and, to impress him, takes on his multi-armed form and says, 'Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.' I suppose we all thought that, one way or another"