Cillian Murphy is one of the fathers of the atomic bomb in the first look at Oppenheimer, Christopher Nolan’s biopic of J. Robert Oppenheimer.
The Universal feature, which has started production in New Mexico, has also added Kenneth Branagh to the call sheet, along with actor Michael Angarano.
The star-studded cast also includes Robert Downey Jr., Matt Damon, Emily Blunt, Florence Pugh, Rami Malek, Benny Safdie, Josh Hartnett, Dane DeHaan, Jack Quaid, Matthew Modine, Alden Ehrenreich and David Krumholtz.
Murphy will portray Oppenheimer, one of the fathers of the A-bomb during the Second World War, who later found his loyalty to the United States questioned by hawkish government officials. Murphy first teamed with Nolan on Batman Begins (2005), where he portrayed the Scarecrow after auditioning for Batman. He has also appeared in Nolan’s Inception (2010), The Dark Knight Rises (2012) and Dunkirk (2017).
Oppenheimer is based on the 2005 Pulitzer Prize-winning book American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer by Kai Bird and the late Martin J. Sherwin. Universal won a bidding war for the project, Nolan’s first movie in years not made with his longtime studio home, Warner Bros.
Production is expected to include shooting on Imax 65mm and 65mm large-format film, with Nolan having recruited director of photography Hoyte van Hoytema, who worked with him on Tenet, Dunkirk and Interstellar, and editor Jennifer Lame and composer Ludwig Göransson, who both also worked on Tenet.
Universal has set a North American theatrical release date of July 21, 2023. A release during the summer month has long been a Nolan tradition.