Syfy Insider Exclusive

Create a free profile to get unlimited access to exclusive videos, sweepstakes, and more!

Sign Up For Free to View
SYFY WIRE Oppenheimer

Oppenheimer: Christopher Nolan Reveals IMAX Secrets in New Featurette As Tickets Go on Sale

Oppenheimer arrives on the big screen Friday, July 21.

By Josh Weiss
Oppenheimer Trailer

Tickets are now on sale for Oppenheimer (opening exclusively in theaters July 21) and to celebrate the joyous occasion, Universal Pictures has released a fresh featurette taking us behind-the-scenes of Christopher Nolan's latest offering.

In an effort to properly capture the life and career of one of the most history-defining individuals who ever lived, Nolan — who wrote, directed, and produced the feature — had to create a little history himself. According to executive producer Thomas Hayslip, the cinematography team (led by director of photography Hoyte van Hoytema) literally had to create a new kind of black and white film that could be run through IMAX cameras.

RELATED: How Exactly Did Oppenheimer's Special Effects Team Recreate an Atomic Blast Without CGI?

"The color scenes are subjective; the black and white scenes are objective," Nolan explained during an interview with Total Film (the magazine's June 2023 issue is now on sale). Based on the footage released so far, it seems that the desaturated sequences take place in the aftermath of World War II as the titular scientist (played by Cillian Murphy) begins to see the horrific error of what he has created.

As van Hoytema (reuniting with Nolan for the fourth time here) notes in the video below, IMAX was created as a format of "spectacle" and "grandeur," which served him incredibly well on Jordan Peele's takedown of that very ideal in last summer's Nope.

True the ethos of its captain, however, Oppenheimer seeks to invert IMAX into an "intimate format," the DP continues. "The face is like a landscape. There's a huge complexity and a huge depth to it. How can we get this camera closer to people? How can we get this medium to work also as a very intimate medium?"

Watch the featurette now:

A historical thriller centered around the race to create the world's first atomic bomb, Oppenheimer features an all-star supporting cast of Emily Blunt, Robert Downey, Jr., Matt Damon, Rami Malek, Josh Peck, Dane DeHaan, Florence Pugh, Benny Safdie, Alden Ehrenreich, Dylan Arnold, Michael Angarano, David Krumholtz, Josh Hartnett, Matthew Modine, and Kenneth Branagh.

Emma Thomas and Charles Roven also served as producers alongside Nolan.

Based on American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer — the Pulitzer Prize-winning biography by Kai Bird and the late Martin J. Sherwin — Oppenheimer arrives on the big screen Friday, July 21. Click here to pick up tickets!

Jonesing for another thriller based on true events? A Friend of the Family is now streaming on Peacock.