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‘Oppenheimer’ Trailer: Cillian Murphy Prepares for Destruction in Christopher Nolan’s WWII Biopic

"Oppenheimer" might be the smallest film Nolan has made in years, but early footage bears all of the trademarks of his unique visual style.

"Oppenheimer"

“Oppenheimer”

Universal

“Avatar: The Way of Water” is proving to be an embarrassment of riches for cinephiles. While much has been made of James Cameron’s long-awaited sequel and its striking visual effects, fans who make the trek to theaters this weekend are also being treated to trailers for some of next year’s buzziest films. The “Barbie” teaser shows off even more of Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling’s fabulous doll outfits, and a new trailer for “Oppenheimer” gives fans their best look yet at what Christopher Nolan is cooking up in his film about atomic bomb inventor Robert Oppenheimer.

“Oppenheimer” is Nolan’s second film that deals with World War II-related subject matter, following the success of 2017’s “Dunkirk.” But while that was a straightforward war movie, “Oppenheimer” promises to be a more intimate character study that takes viewers inside the mind of the man who created history’s deadliest weapon.

Written and directed by Nolan, “Oppenheimer” stars Cillian Murphy, Robert Downey Jr., Matt Damon, Florence Pugh, Emily Blunt, Kenneth Branagh, Rami Malek, Casey Affleck, Gary Oldman, James Remar, Josh Hartnett, and Alden Ehrenreich.

With a budget of “only” $100 million, “Oppenheimer” will be the smallest scale movie that Nolan has made in decades. But the spectacle-loving director is still finding ways to visually dazzle his audiences. In a recent interview, Nolan explained that the film recreates the first nuclear bomb detonation without using any digital effects.

“I think recreating the Trinity test [the first nuclear weapon detonation ever] without the use of computer graphics was a huge challenge to take on,” Nolan said. “Andrew Jackson — my visual effects supervisor, I got him on board early on — was looking at how we could do a lot of the visual elements of the film practically, from representing quantum dynamics and quantum physics to the Trinity test itself, to recreating, with my team, Los Alamos up on a mesa in New Mexico in extraordinary weather, a lot of which was needed for the film, in terms of the very harsh conditions out there – there were huge practical challenges.”

“Oppenheimer” opens in theaters on July 21, 2023. Watch the trailer below.

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