It’s been over 20 years since Christopher Nolan made a movie for a studio other than Warner Bros., and in that time the filmmaker and his employers collaborated on nine features that have been showered in critical acclaim and no shortage of awards season glory, not to mention countless billions of box office dollars.
However, it looks as though WB’s handling of the pandemic could bring an end to the long and fruitful partnership, with Nolan now shopping his latest project all over Hollywood, where it’s set to ignite a serious bidding war. Returning to the well of historical drama that served him so well with Dunkirk, the architect of the Dark Knight Trilogy is developing a biographical story focusing on J. Robert Oppenheimer’s role in the development of the atomic bomb.
As per Deadline, several outfits around town including Sony and Universal have read the script and opened talks with Nolan’s representatives, which would be a hammer blow for Warner Bros. should they end up losing their golden goose. The five-time Academy Award nominee was highly critical of the entire 2021 slate of releases debuting simultaneously on HBO Max, which wasn’t a surprise when he’s one of the theatrical experience’s staunchest defenders.
Netflix’s head of original film Scott Stuber admitted a few months back that he was planning on making a serious play for Nolan’s next directorial effort, but it’s unlikely that the mind behind Inception and Interstellar would entertain the notion of taking his talents to streaming so soon after his scathing comments aimed in the direction of Warner Bros., but his regular home studio may yet end up offering him a deal he can’t refuse to have him stick around.