Australian trailer and release date for Oppenheimer

“They won’t fear it until they understand it. And they won’t understand it until they’ve used it.”

So intones Cillian Murphy’s J. Robert Oppenheimer, “the father of the atomic bomb”, in the trailer for Christopher Nolan’s upcoming biopic. Audiences can get an insight into the dawn of the Atomic Age when Oppenheimer hits cinemas on July 20.

Christopher Nolan, one of the most revered filmmakers of the modern age, writes and directs this gripping biopic (as well as shooting the whole thing in IMAX and setting off one of the biggest explosions in cinema history, the madman!) based on the book American Prometheus by Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin. The film follows theoretical physicist Oppenheimer’s work on the Manhattan Project, the US government’s nuclear weapons project, during World War II. It’s hard to imagine a more high stakes real world scenario, and Nolan is pretty much guaranteed to milk it for all the drama and scale possible.

As is typical for the Dark Knight and Dunkirk director, Nolan has pulled together a ridiculously stacked cast for this one, including (deep breath) Emily Blunt, Matt Damon, Robert Downey Jr, Florence Pugh, Rami Malek, Kenneth Branagh, Alden Ehrenreich, Matthew Modine, Jack Quaid, David Dastmalchian, Gary Oldman, Casey Affleck, Josh Hartnett, Dane DeHaan, Benny Safdie, David Krumholtz, and more. In fact, that might be the most impressive ensemble we’ve seen in years, which speaks to Nolan’s actor appeal.

Is there audience appeal, though? Nolan is unarguably one of the most commercially successful directors currently working, but this is a talky historical drama with a reported $100 million budget. You have to wonder in this age of caped creeps (and let’s face it, Nolan is at least partly responsible) if Oppenheimer will get enough bums on seats. Still, at least critics are well set up with “bomb” puns if it keels over…