'Oppenheimer' teaser: Cillian Murphy as bomb scientist in new Christopher Nolan movie

·Contributor
·2 min read

Watch: First teaser trailer for Oppenheimer

Universal Pictures has unveiled the first teaser trailer for Christopher Nolan's upcoming drama Oppenheimer, in which Cillian Murphy plays the scientist behind the atomic bomb.

The film — Nolan's first since the 2020 thriller Tenet — is set to explore the life of theoretical physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer and his time at the head of the Manhattan Project during the Second World War.

Read more: Christian Bale would play Batman again for Christopher Nolan

Oppenheimer was subsequently referred to as "the father of the atomic bomb" and later expressed fears around the prospect of a nuclear arms race between global superpowers.

The trailer features Peaky Blinders actor Murphy in the role of Oppenheimer, revealing the movie's handsome, monochrome visual style.

Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer in Oppenheimer, written and directed by Christopher Nolan. (Universal Pictures)
Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer in Oppenheimer, written and directed by Christopher Nolan. (Universal Pictures)

The trailer's snippets of dialogue feature Oppenheimer described as "the man who moved the earth" and "the most important man who ever lived".

Other than that, it mostly features enigmatic shots of Murphy — face mostly concealed beneath the rim of his hat — staring and brooding, intercut with fiery images of explosions.

Read more: Cillian Murphy says his kids have posh English accents

The teaser also features a countdown timer leading to the movie's release date in July 2023, timed down to the second, which suggests that Nolan's ongoing fascination with time-meddling may well play into this film.

US nuclear physicist Julius Robert Oppenheimer (1904 - 1967), director of the Los Alamos atomic laboratory, testifying before the Special Senate Committee on Atomic Energy.   (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
US nuclear physicist Julius Robert Oppenheimer (1904 - 1967), director of the Los Alamos atomic laboratory, testifying before the Special Senate Committee on Atomic Energy. (Keystone/Getty Images)

While the likes of Interstellar and Tenet use sci-fi concepts around time as part of their stories, even Nolan's true-life drama Dunkirk deployed a clever structure to bring time-bending action to the forefront.

Alongside Murphy, Oppenheimer features a packed ensemble of A-list talent including Florence Pugh, Emily Blunt, Robert Downey Jr, Matt Damon, Rami Malek and Kenneth Branagh.

Christopher Nolan has partnered with Universal to distribute Oppenheimer into cinemas in 2023. (Getty/Kodak)
Christopher Nolan has partnered with Universal to distribute Oppenheimer into cinemas in 2023. (Getty/Kodak)

It marks Nolan's first collaboration with Universal after he uncoupled from Warner Bros in the wake of its controversial decision to release its 2021 cinema slate on the HBO Max streaming platform.

Read more: Christopher Nolan defends Tenet box office performance

Nolan's deal with Universal reportedly included a set of conditions, including a guaranteed 100-day theatrical window and a period of three weeks either side of its release date in which Universal will not release anything else.

Oppenheimer has been set for cinema release on 21 July 2023.

Watch: Matt Damon and Robert Downey Jr join Oppenheimer cast

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