Oppenheimer Is One Of The Most Anticipated Films Of The Year – Here's What You Need To Know

With the movie's release date now just weeks away, the countdown is on for Christopher Nolan’s new real-life thriller.
Cillian Murphy in Oppenheimer
Cillian Murphy in Oppenheimer

Oppenheimer, the hotly anticipated Christopher Nolan film starring Cillian Murphy, is due to hit cinemas in just a few weeks.

The big-budget biographical thriller follows Robert J. Oppenheimer, who is known as ‘the father of the atomic bomb’ due to his work with on the Manhattan Project in developing the first nuclear weapons during World War II.

With an all-star cast, which includes Emily Blunt, Matt Damon, Robert Downey Jr, and Florence Pugh, the blockbuster will no doubt have people rushing to the cinemas.

Got questions about the upcoming movie? Here’s everything you need to know.

Is Oppenheimer based on a true story?

Oppenheimer tells the story of the theoretical physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer, who helped develop the world’s first nuclear weapons.

Julius Robert Oppenheimer, pictured in c1946
Julius Robert Oppenheimer, pictured in c1946
Pictures from History via Getty Images

The film is based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning 2005 biography American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer by Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin.

Oppenheimer was heavily involved in The Manhattan Project, a research and development undertaking during World War II.

From 1942 to 1946, he was the director of the Los Alamos Laboratory that designed the bombs under the direction of Major General Leslie Groves of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

At its peak, nearly 130,000 people were involved in the project, which at the time cost nearly $2billion, the equivalent of $24billion in 2021.

As a result of his work, Oppenheimer is a key figure within the narrative of atomic bomb ethics and political nuclear power.

Oppenheimer, who was a chain smoker, was diagnosed with throat cancer in late 1965.

On February 15, 1967, he fell into a coma and died at his home in Princeton, New Jersey on three days later at the age of 62.

Who is in the cast of Oppenheimer?

All the biggest names in Hollywood appear to have been cast in Oppenheimer.

While Cillian Murphy plays the titular role, Emily Blunt takes on the role of his on-screen wife, Katherine “Kitty” Oppenheimer.

Emily Blunt
Emily Blunt
Bryan Bedder via Getty Images

Robert Downey Jr plays American businessman Lewis Strauss, Matt Damon is Liutenenant General Leslie Groves, and Florence Pugh stars as American psychiatrist Jean Tatlock.

The line-up also includes Kenneth Branagh, Rami Malek, Josh Peck, Gary Oldman, Casey Affleck, and Jack Quaid, as well as Matthias Schweighöfer, Christopher Denham, David Rysdahl, Guy Burnet, Harrison Gibertson, Emma Dumont, Gustaf Skarsgård, Trond Fausa Aurvåg, and Olli Haaskivi.

Florence Pugh
Florence Pugh
Lionel Hahn via Getty Images

Benny Safdie, Michael Angarano, Josh Hartnett, Dane DeHann, Dylan Arnold, David Krumholtz, Alden Ehrenreich, Matthew Modine, David Dastmalchian, Jason Clarke, Devon Bostick, Alex Wolff, Tony Goldwynn, Scott Grimes, James D’Arcy, Olivia Thirlby, and Louise Lombard complete the cast.

What has been said about Oppenheimer already?

First reviews of the film are still under embargo, with the press tour also set to get underway shortly. However, details about the film have already started trickling out.

“Some people leave the movie absolutely devastated,” Nolan said about early screenings in an interview with Wired.

Oppenheimer irector Christopher Nolan
Oppenheimer irector Christopher Nolan
VALERIE MACON via Getty Images

“They can’t speak. I mean, there’s an element of fear that’s there in the history and there in the underpinnings. But the love of the characters, the love of the relationships, is as strong as I’ve ever done.”

The director added: “It is an intense experience because it’s an intense story. I showed it to a filmmaker recently who said it’s kind of a horror movie. I don’t disagree.”

When is the release date for Oppenheimer?

Oppenheimer is scheduled to be released in cinemas on Friday 21 July – the same date as Greta Gerwig’s Barbie.

In addition to standard cinemas, Oppenheimer will be also available to watch at Imax cinemas.

The film is Christopher’s longest to date, clocking in with a run time of three hours.

Is there a trailer for Oppenheimer?


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