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Jordan Peele discusses his most 'ambitious' film yet in 'Nope' behind-the-scenes footage

"This whole film is as ambitious a cinematic event as I've kind of planned so far in my career."

By Josh Weiss
Left to right: Daniel Kaluuya and Writer/Director/Producer Jordan Peele on the set of NOPE

The horror hits Get Out and Us are mere appetizers when compared to Jordan Peele's third filmmaking effort — Nope — which opens in theaters everywhere next month from Universal Pictures.

"This whole film is as ambitious a cinematic event as I've kind of planned so far in my career," the writer-director says of the sci-fi/horror project in a fresh sneak peek featurette that dropped online Wednesday. "I tried to write a script that I didn't know how to pull off and then assemble the team to help me pull it off. This is one of the days and these weeks where it feels really good to be a director."  

While the footage doesn't contain any glimpses of the movie's cosmic threat (sinister extra-terrestrial visitors are abducting folks and causing strange phenomena to occur), it does contain a slew of behind-the-scenes shots where members of the cast gaze up at the sky or into the camera with awestruck terror. We're not exactly sure what they're looking at, but whatever it is, it can't be good for the residents of the lonely California gulch town where the story takes place. With that said, a recent TV spot aired during the NBA Playoffs did deliver a brief look at a gargantuan flying saucer kicking up a sandstorm in its wake. It's classic sci-fi imagery, to be sure, but let's keep in mind that Mr. Peele never fails to upend our genre expectations.

Check out the featurette below:

"I love a rapt audience saying, ''Nope!' or, 'Get out the house!'" Peele explained during the Universal Pictures presentation at CinemaCon back in late April (via Entertainment Weekly). "I love to encourage that interaction because that's what's giving the audience a unique experience. Rollercoasters aren't fun alone. Being scared isn't fun alone. You need that energy." 

He continued: "This film is definitely a ride. The title speaks to the idea of being in tune with what the audience is thinking and feeling in the theater. I know a lot of people who say, when it's a scary movie, they say, 'Nope!' Especially Black audiences, right? We love horror but there's a skepticism." 

Oscar-winner Daniel Kaluuya (the actor's second team-up with Peele after Get Out), Keke Palmer (Hustlers), Oscar nominee Steven Yeun (Minari), and Michael Wincott (Westworld) co-star. Peele produced the film alongside Ian Cooper (Candyman) via their Monkeypaw Productions company.

Nope exclusively floats onto the big screen Friday, July 22. Click here to feast your eyes on a collection of new motion posters.