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‘Tenet’ First Trailer: Christopher Nolan Returns With a Time-Bending Espionage Epic

The 2020 action epic stars John David Washington, Robert Pattinson, and Elizabeth Debicki.

Select U.S. audiences got to see the first teaser for Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet” in front of screenings of “Hobbs & Shaw” this summer, and now months later Warner Bros. has finally made the tentpole’s official first trailer available online. Like all of Nolan’s first trailers, the “Tenet” teaser is selling an ambitious scope and a mind-bending narrative. Is Nolan back in “Memento” and “Inception” storytelling mode? The trailer will surely gets fans buzzing.

“Tenet” stars John David Washington in his biggest role to date after breaking out in Spike Lee’s “BlacKkKlansman.” From the look of it, Washington appears to be playing a detective investigating some kind of unusual case. The film’s high profile supporting cast includes Robert Pattinson, Elizabeth Debicki, Nolan regular Michael Caine, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Kenneth Branagh, Dimple Kapadia, and Clémence Poésy.

Nolan is reuniting with his “Interstellar” and “Dunkirk” cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema on “Tenet.” “Dunkirk” earned Hoytema an Oscar nomination for Best Cinematographer, while Nolan competed for Best Director. Nolan has hired Oscar-winning “Black Panther” composer Ludwig Göransson to handle the original score, rather than his usual collaborator Hans Zimmer.

The reported budget on “Tenet” is over $220 million, which would make it the most expensive original film of Nolan’s career so far. The filmmaker earned some of his best reviews yet with his last feature, the WWII survival thriller “Dunkirk.” The drama grossed $526 million worldwide and earned eight Oscar nominations and three wins: Best Sound Editing, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Film Editing.

Like “Dunkirk,” Nolan is filming “Tenet” using IMAX cameras. The movie will be released by Warner Bros. in various formats, including IMAX, 35mm, and 70mm. Outside of the trailer, the only other bit of marketing for “Tenet” is an online poster in which the title spins around and changes the background from black to white.

Nolan teased “Tenet” this week in a interview in which he said, “We’re jumping off from the point of view of an espionage film, but we’re going to a number of different places. We’re crossing a few different genres in a hopefully exciting and fresh way. We shot in seven countries, all over the place, with a massive cast and huge set pieces. There’s no question, it’s the most ambitious film we’ve made.”

Warner Bros. is distributing “Tenet” in theaters worldwide on July 17, 2020. Watch the trailer below.

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