Christopher Nolan had a very surprising way of sending Oppenheimer’s script to Cillian Murphy, and the crazy thing is that he does this for every film!

Christopher Nolan, one of the most respected and enigmatic directors of our time, has a very particular method for ensuring that the scripts of his films remain confidential until their release. This unique practice was recently revealed by Cillian Murphy, the leading actor in several of Nolan’s works.

Summary

  • A Fruitful Collaboration
  • Script Delivery: A Family Tradition
  • An Exception for Oppenheimer
  • A Unique Atmosphere on the Plateau
  • Exceptional rigor
  • An Unbreakable Bond

A Fruitful Collaboration

Christopher Nolan and Cillian Murphy collaborated on six films, each becoming a pillar of contemporary cinema. Their partnership began with Batman Begins in 2005, where Murphy played the role of Dr. Jonathan Crane, aka the Scarecrow. This collaboration continued with the two sequels of the trilogy Dark Knightas well as with Inception in 2010, Dunkirk in 2017, and more recently, Oppenheimer.

Oppenheimer, Nolan’s latest masterpiece, explores the life of J. Robert Oppenheimer, the theoretical physicist who played a crucial role in the development of the first nuclear bomb as part of the Manhattan Project. The critically acclaimed film earned 13 Academy Award nominations, once again confirming Nolan’s undeniable talent for creating captivating and profound stories.


Script Delivery: A Family Tradition

Cillian Murphy shared a fascinating anecdote about how Nolan delivers his film scripts. Unlike many directors who might send scripts via email or secure messaging, Nolan prefers a much more personal and direct approach. According to Murphy, it’s often Nolan’s mother or brother who takes on this task. This tradition not only preserves the confidentiality of the content, but also adds a ritual dimension that Murphy particularly appreciates.

Murphy explained to British GQ:

It was his mother who gave me the script before. Or his brother; he leaves and returns three hours later. This helps keep the story a secret before release. But it is also a question of tradition. They’ve always done it this way, so why stop now? It adds a ritual that I really enjoy. It’s OK for me.


An Exception for Oppenheimer

However, for Oppenheimer, Nolan made an exception to this well-established tradition. This time, he flew to Dublin, Ireland, to deliver the script to Murphy himself. After offering the role to Murphy over the phone, an offer the actor always accepts without hesitation, Nolan left Murphy alone in a hotel room to read the script, before returning at the appropriate time.

He had already called and said he wanted me to play the role. And I said yes, because I always say yes to him,” Murphy said.. Nolan, known for his aversion to cell phones, seems to have an intuitive sense of timing, returning at exactly the right moment to discuss the script with Murphy.


A Unique Atmosphere on the Plateau

Cillian Murphy also described the unique atmosphere on Nolan’s film sets. He says working with Nolan is like being in a “private, intimate laboratory.” Despite Nolan’s fast pace of work, there is always room for curiosity and discovery, essential elements in artistic creation.

Murphy shared:

Although Nolan works at an incredible pace, there’s always room for curiosity and discovery, and that’s what art-making should be, you know? There are no phones – but also no announcements: everyone just knows.


Exceptional rigor

Another particularity of Nolan’s filming is the absence of chairs on the set. Murphy explained that this decision comes from the fact that Nolan never sits down. This practice is intended to prevent the film set from becoming a relaxing place where crew members might be distracted by their phones or other non-work-related activities.

Christopher Nolan had a very surprising way of sending Oppenheimer's script to Cillian Murphy, and the crazy thing is that he does this for every film!

And there are no chairs. Because he doesn’t sit down. Sometimes a film set can feel like a picnic. Everyone has their chairs and snacks and everyone is texting and showing everyone emojis.


An Unbreakable Bond

The professional relationship between Nolan and Murphy is a testament to trust and mutual respect. Their collaboration continues to produce films that not only captivate audiences, but also set high standards in cinematic storytelling. With Oppenheimerthey have once again proven that their partnership is synonymous with success, both critical and popular.

Ultimately, the method of Christopher Nolan to keep your scenarios secret is much more than a simple security measure. It is a tradition that reflects his rigor, his commitment to the art of cinema and the respect he gives to his collaborators. And for Cillian Murphyit’s an integral part of the unique experience of working with one of the most talented directors of our time.

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