What is Christopher Nolan’s next movie after Oppenheimer?

Christopher Nolan on the Oppenheimer posterUniversal Pictures

After Oppenheimer, all eyes are on Christopher Nolan – what will his next film be, and will it be a James Bond movie? Here’s what we know.

Over the course of 25 years, Nolan’s directorial prowess has seen him become the modern-day household name with surprisingly just 12 movies: Following, Memento, Insomnia, Batman Begins, The Prestige, The Dark Knight, Inception, The Dark Knight Rises, Interstellar, Dunkirk, Tenet, and of course, Oppenheimer.

The latter movie is his latest, starring Cillian Murphy as the titular “father of the atomic bomb” in a wartime-spanning, dazzling epic. In our review, we called it “less biopic and more horror movie” and a “towering achievement that’s up there with Nolan’s very best, and a film of both great importance, and true humanity.”

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It’s one of the biggest movies of the year, and while audiences flock out to see it on the largest screen they can find – hopefully IMAX 70mm – we’re wondering: what does he have up his sleeve next?

What’s Christopher Nolan’s next movie?

Put simply, we don’t know. Nolan hasn’t teased any details about what his next movie will be; what shape it will take, what it’ll be about, who it’ll revolve around, all remain a mystery.

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In a recent profile by Variety, Nolan didn’t tease any specific project, but explained that he’s open to any sort of movie, be it an altogether new project, remake, or adaptation – as long it’s original to him.

“Ideas come from everywhere. I’ve done a remake, I’ve made adaptations from comic books and novels, and I’ve written original screenplays. I’m open to anything. But as a writer and director, whatever I do, I have to feel like I own it completely. I have to make it original to me: The initial seed of an idea may come from elsewhere, but it has to go through my fingers on a keyboard and come out through my eyes alone,” he said.

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“As I do interviews and the film’s coming out, I’m always asked, do you know what you’re doing next?” Nolan also told The New York Times.

“And the answer is always the same. For me, I do one thing at a time and I put everything into it obsessively, and the film is not finished. Well, the way I like to put it is, the audience finishes the film.”

However, we do know there’ll be another film, because the director has no intention of retiring anytime soon.

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Christopher Nolan’s next movie predictions

While we don’t have any concrete details, we can look to Nolan’s past for ideas of what his next movie may be; more specifically, three unmade projects and a possible dream gig.

James Bond

Daniel Craig as James Bond in No Time To DieUniversal Pictures

Let’s deal with the latter first: a James Bond movie directed by Christopher Nolan. Bond 26 will be a “reinvention” of the character and franchise, according to producer Barbara Broccoli, and Nolan has long expressed interest in taking the reins of his own picture, not only if the opportunity arose, but if the series called for it.

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“I deeply love the character, and I’m always excited to see what they do with it. Maybe one day that would work out. You’d have to be needed, if you know what I mean. It has to need reinvention; it has to need you,” he told BBC Radio 4 in 2018.

The stars seemed to be aligning, too: rumors have indicated that Nolan’s been in talks to helm two Bond movies whenever the next era of the franchise begins.

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However, unless he’s bluffing, Nolan seemed to quell any and all reports in a recent interview with AP. When asked if he’d be directing a Bond movie of his own, he said: “No, sadly no. No truth to those rumors.”

You can read more about our wish for a Nolan Bond movie here.

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Howard Hughes biopic

Jim Carrey and Leonardo DiCaprio as Howard Hughes in The AviatorSaban Films/Warner Bros.

Following the release of Insomnia in 2002, Nolan began writing a biopic centered on Howard Hughes, the iconic business magnate. If he sounds familiar in celluloid, it’s because he was once portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio in Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator, a movie that forced Nolan to abandon his own take on the figure.

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His film would have starred Jim Carrey as Hughes in the final reclusive years of his life as his health issues and battles with OCD intensified. In an interview with The Daily Beast, Nolan spoke about his reaction to Scorsese’s movie going into production: “I was definitely like, ‘F*ck!’

“I think it’s the best script I’ve ever written, and I had a really wonderful experience writing it. Yeah, it was a frustrating experience that the other movie got going. Will I revisit it? I have no idea. I really don’t think about what I’m going to do next until I’m completely finished, and for the next couple of weeks I’m still all about Interstellar. I wouldn’t necessarily rule it out, but I wrote it a long time ago.”

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The Keys to the Street

Gemma Arterton in The King's Man20th Century Studios

After his Howard Hughes biopic fell through, he was briefly attached to direct an adaptation of Ruth Rendell’s The Keys to the Street, following a woman’s investigation into several homeless people being impaled and killed in London’s Regent’s Park.

The project sat with Fox Searchlight and would have starred Gemma Arterton as Mary Jago, but Nolan ultimately decided to leave the film. “I think the script is very good,” he told a fan site.

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“I don’t think it’s what I want to do next. I think another director will do that. It’s a really cool script, but has a lot in common with the three films I’ve made, so it may not be the right film for me to do next.”

The Prisoner

Patrick McGoohan in The PrisonerITV

This is the most interesting one. For those who don’t know, The Prisoner was a TV series first released in 1967, following a British intelligence who’s abducted and taken to a strange coastal village, and anyone who tries to escape is merely recaptured or killed.

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It was remade in the form of a miniseries starring Jim Caviezel in 2009, but it was generally dismissed by critics.

The Prisoner’s mysterious, twisty story is clearly a big influence on Nolan, and he was once attached to bring Number Six to the big screen. “The Prisoner is something I’ve been interested in for quite a long time, and I think I’ve figured out the take on how we’d approach it,” he said in 2009, as per IGN.

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“The relevance of it today. David and Janet Peoples are terrific, who you know wrote Blade Runner and Twelve Monkeys… all kinds of great movies. They’re working on the script right now. I wouldn’t want to speak for them. I’m very excited to see what they’ve come up with.”

Alas, producer Barry Mendel confirmed in 2009 that Nolan had dropped out, and with the exception of a brief mention of Ridley Scott taking it on, there’s been few updates since.

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During a recent appearance on the Happy Sad Confused podcast ahead of Oppenheimer, Nolan was asked if he’d consider going back to The Prisoner. While admitting he hadn’t “cracked it”, he said: “I wouldn’t wanna say anything about what I’m gonna do next… because the truth is I haven’t figured it out.”

Oppenheimer is available to buy or rent digitally on Amazon Prime, and you can also purchase the movie via these links below:

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You can also check out our other coverage below:

Oppenheimer review | Epic runtime revealed | R-rating explained | Best way to watch Oppenheimer | Christopher Nolan on sex scenes | Cast and characters | Filming locations | True story explained | Is Oppenheimer streaming? | Nolan ranked by Rotten Tomato scores | Is it based on a book? | Age-gap controversy explained Robert Pattinson’s influence | How Oppenheimer died | Christopher Nolan explains strange script | Did Japan ban Oppenheimer? | Review roundup | Does Oppenheimer have a post-credits scene? | Who dies? | Box office | Ending explained | Why did Lewis Strauss hate Oppenheimer?

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