Universal Pictures has landed the rights to finance and distribute Christopher Nolan’s next film. The project will reportedly center around J. Robert Oppenheimer and the creation of the atomic bomb.

Oppenheimer of course was theoretical physicist who became renown for heading the team that oversaw the development of the bomb that infamously put an end to World War II. The then-top-secret undertaking was covertly referred to as the Manhattan Project. In addition to directing, Nolan is set to produce the film alongside his wife and longtime producing partner Emma Thomas for their Syncopy Inc. label.

Sources say that the project has been officially greenlit to begin principal photography in the first quarter of 2022. Additionally, Christopher Nolan is currently eyeing frequent on-screen collaborator Cillian Murphy for the lead role.

The move to Universal officially marks the end of a long partnership between Christopher Nolan and Warner Bros. The studio had previously worked with the filmmaker on most of his filmography to date, including The Dark Knight trilogy, Inception, Dunkirk, and most recently Tenet. According to the report, Nolan never even considered reteaming with WB for his new movie. Potential suitors included Universal, Sony, and MGM.

The parting of ways between filmmaker and studio, while notable, is not surprising. Nolan was very open about his disappointment in Warner Bros. for their decision to release their films both on streaming and theatrically simultaneously. Nolan is a huge proponent of preserving the theatrical moviegoing experience and his shift to Universal is just as much about making a professional statement as it is about finding the perfect home for his next project.

Story courtesy of Deadline.


What do you make of this news? Do you think Christopher Nolan is making the right choice by leaving longtime partner Warner Bros. behind? Will Universal Pictures be a good home for the filmmaker? Are you even interested in checking out Nolan’s next movie? Sound off in the comments below and let us and the rest of the movie loving world know your thoughts on the topic!

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