Is Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar Being Positioned for the 2015 Oscar Race?

A few years ago, two things happened. My alarm ringtone was changed to Mind Heist by Zack Hemsey (the music from the trailer for Inception) and I stumbled upon Interstellar’s IMDb page. At the time, Interstellar was one of many movies in line to be directed by Steven Spielberg. Those movies included War Horse, The Adventures of Tintin and Lincoln.

From time to time I would check on Interstellar‘s status and be met with disappointment as Spielberg would pick a new project. But after seeing Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s zero gravity fight sequence in Inception, an idea struck me and took hold. Christopher Nolan needs to direct Interstellar.

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In January news broke that he was in talks to take over and yesterday it was announced that Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar will be released in theaters and IMAX on November 7th, 2014. Nolan is currently rewriting the script (originally penned by his brother Jonathan) to incorporate his own ideas. The movie is being co-produced and distributed by Paramount and Warner Bros; a rare joint venture proving how hot Nolan is right now.

There’s not much information on the plot yet, considering the screenplay is still being reworked. All that’s really known is that Jonathan Nolan’s script was based on physicist Kip Thorne’s theories on gravity fields and wormholes and that the plot involves time travel and alternate dimensions.

That’s all we know. So what can we glean from this information?

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Interstellar is the first Christopher Nolan movie since 2006’s The Prestige not to have a summer tentpole release. The November release date leads me to think this will be a very big movie for Christopher Nolan’s career. November signifies the start of Oscar season and setting Interstellar up at the kickoff could be rather telling.

Nolan’s movies earn money. He’s highly talented Hollywood gold and his highest grossing movies have all had summer releases. Considering Disney’s Star Wars and The Avengers 2 aren’t coming until 2015, I think a cluttered summer slate can be ruled out. Based on the very limited information at hand, I think Interstellar will be a new direction for Nolan’s career.

One of my issues with Inception was the complex plot was forced to be slightly dumbed down. It was a summer blockbuster and much of the dialogue involves a character explaining what is happening on screen. Interstellar‘s November release could mean a more cerebral and less held back script from the Nolan brothers. Since they’re writing for a different audience, it may become something that could harken back to the mind bending days of Memento.

This could be a turning point for Nolan but it’s clearly too early to speculate on such things. I just wanted to voice my excitement for a movie that I never thought I’d see get made the way I wanted it to be made.

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How do you feel about Nolan’s follow-up to The Dark Knight Trilogy? Who do you think will be cast out of the pool of talent Nolan usually chooses from? Do you think Nolan has the talent to make the first Sci-Fi to win Best Picture? What’s your alarm ringtone?

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26 responses to “Is Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar Being Positioned for the 2015 Oscar Race?

  1. I really like this news. Inception did seem a bit dumbed down but I think that’s because most of the stuff was made up anyways or was facts most people didn’t know. I’d rather have a dense story and have things explained. Plus that movie does still have intelligence/ambiguity to it. I think the release date is very teling like you said for this film. I expect a film more like Memento/The Prestige. I actually was thinking itd be based on one character like Memento because Nolan has been doing so much ensemble films lately. I do think he has the talent to win an oscar for this film.

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    • I really think he has the talent to win an Oscar, definitely. I really hope this will be more like The Prestige and Memento, like you said.

      Though I don’t think he’ll stray from the ensemble movies he’s been making. He’s got a long list of actors he’s been using regularly. Being a space movie, however, there could just be a cast of a dozen or less actors. It’ll be interesting to see what Nolan does with a confined cast in a small environment. Assuming that’s how the movie will be.

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      • Yeah I suppose your right about the ensemble cast. I guess I should have said I think it will be a smaller group than what he has been doing. I really did enjoy the ensembles in Inception and TDKR personally but that was because of the stories. Maybe he likes juggling these big casts now though? I kind of assumed that with the wormholes, alternate dimensions, and time travel it’d be better to focus on a main character (My reasoning for it being like Memento and The Prestige). What are your thoughts on that? Who would you like to see cast as well? New Faces or old? I was thinking for new people Fassbender or Natalie Portman maybe? I would love to see Hardy as the lead but he’s so busy.

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  2. It really would be cool to see him go back to a smaller story. But a space movie about wormholes, alternate timelines and time travel deserves a huge ensemble, I think.

    Michael Fassbender in a Chris Nolan movie would make my day! He’s an amazing actor. As for old faces, I really want Joseph Gordon-Levitt to have a part. Tom Hardy would be great too. I’d really like to see Nolan team up with Guy Pearce again.

    New faces? Natalie Portman would be good. And maybe Sam Rockwell!

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    • You’ve persuaded me on the ensemble cast haha. It will take some great directing to balance an ensemble with the content of the story (that we know). I think Fassbender is an actual possibility and I think Nolan will be looking for more new talent as well. On twitter a reporter asked Joseph Gordon-Levitt about Interstellar and the reporter said JGL just smirked so that seems like it’ll happen.

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      • Haha. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is such an awesome guy. I’m sure he’ll be in it. I was also thinking about maybe Ben Foster. He’s really talented but I feel like he hasn’t really popped the way that he should have by now. His performance in 3:10 to Yuma is outstanding. If he were in Interstellar, it could give him some much needed exposure.

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      • Yeah Foster would be great. There is alot of underrated actors that deserve some exposure. I think a few will make it in as supporting roles. How complex are you anticipating it to be?

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      • I’m hoping it’s as complex as Inception (if not more). But I just really hope he lets the audience figure out the plot instead of spelling it out like in Inception.

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      • I got a few thoughts on that. I do think Chris got to caught up in explaining but I do think that was intentional. The movie was billed as a summer blockbuster and you have to know your audience. That audience is for a lack of a better word “dumb” and people still found it to be too confusing when it really was directed fantastically in terms of storytelling. The exposition was a bit much for me and others but that’s because avid movie fans expect to be held to a higher standard. Also like I said before the rules of Inception are not actual facts therefore alot of it does have to be explained but I agree it could have been done better through visuals. Chris wrote Inception and JONATHAN wrote Interstellar. Jonathan also wrote Memento, The Prestige, TDK, and TDKR which i think are the best written Nolan films so that’s why I think INterstellar will more “mature” and possibly the most compelling and confusing. Like you said the release date is telling as well. I think they’re going for an Oscar or at least setting up the possibility. Thoughts?

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      • I absolutely agree. Inception was written for the masses. So I’m sure any fan of Memento and The Prestige will have issues with the script. I’m not saying it was a bad script at all. He did a fantastic job delivering a complex concept to a wide audience. It’s their fault if they couldn’t follow it.

        I know Chris is reworking Jonathan’s script to incorporate his own ideas (pretty much just doing what they’ve always done). It’ll be interesting to see what they come up with. I’m already hoping for a thorough dvd/blu-ray release because I would love to know what the movie would have been like if Spielberg directed Jonathan’s original script.

        But, unless I’m mistaken, Nolan’s not too big on special features.

        But, yes, I think they’ve got a good shot at at least getting the attention of the Academy. Interstellar may not win them anything, considering the Academy frowns on genre movies (I mean, Kubrick got nothing for 2001). If nothing else, Interstellar could be a big transitional movie for Nolan. I hope it helps him break out of the Hollywood hit-maker status and into the Great Filmmaker category most people know he’s capable of.

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      • Definitely agree. It would have been very interesting to see how Spielberg would have adapted Jonathan’s script. I sadly don’t think we’ll get much from that on the special features. I don’t think Chris adding in his own original ideas will change the script too much either. I guess we won’t know until we see it if it has a shot at an Oscar. I do think like you said this will be a transitional movie in a way for him. His post TDK career. I love the TDK movies but it’ll be fun to see where he goes from here. He’s only 43 years old too. I wonder if he’ll ever do the Howard Hughes movie. Chris said it was the best thing Chris has ever written (wonder if he’ll ever make it) and he also adapted a Novel ‘Keys to the Street” which hasn’t been made. The Howard Hughes film would probably rake in the Oscars. I read a rumor in early 2011 that Chris wanted to do his Howard Hughes film after TDKR so maybe after Interstellar he’ll do it.

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      • Wow. I hadn’t heard about any of this. Lol. After a cursory Google search it looks like the Howard Hughes project is dead. http://blogs.indiewire.com/theplaylist/christopher-nolan-says-his-howard-hughes-film-is-dead-but-hed-still-like-to-do-a-bond-film-at-some-point-20120604

        But he does want to do a Bond movie, apparently. That would be pretty cool. Maybe casting Cillian Murphy as the new Bond?

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      • Yeah you never know about the Howard Hughes movie though. He might want to make it sometime in the future. I do think he’ll do his bond movie after Craig is done and Nolan will get to pick his bond. I would guess it’d be Tom Hardy first, Then Idris Elba, Fassbender and yeah Murphy is a possibility too. But it’s hard to say who hed cast because that film is so far off. That won’t be for about 8 more years (MGM said the next bond film wont be coming out for about 3 years and Craig still has 2 films left) though so Nolan will have maybe 3 movies done before that.

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      • Bond or not, I’d love to see Idris Elba in a Chris Nolan movie. I would add him to the Interstellar list, but he just did Prometheus so I guess we’ll see.

        Now that I’m getting more into the Bond franchise, I’m really curious to see what Nolan would do with that universe.

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      • Yeah I think it’d be awesome. The action in Inception was very bond like. So what do you make of Matthew McConaughey being offered the lead role in Interstellar. He’s been on fire lately. Looks like Nolan got him at the right time.

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      • Matthew McConaughey isn’t my ideal choice for the lead in a Nolan movie. But, then again, I haven’t seen Killer Joe yet and I’ve heard he’s great in it. Besides, if anyone can get a great performance out of McConaughey, it’s Nolan.

        I’m glad news is starting to trickle through. I hope we hear more about it soon. I’m getting giddy about the casting lol.

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      • Hes amazing in Killer Joe. Should have been nominated IMO. This year he’s got Wolf of Wall Street dir. by Scorsese and Dallas Buyers Club which looks like he went all out and Mud which people have said hes great in. Casting is hard to say without knowing the character so I just go by talent and McConaughey finally tapped into it these past two years. I’m interested too see who else is cast as well!

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      • I’m very excited for The Wolf of Wall Street. I need to make Killer Joe a priority. I’ll be on the lookout for those other two movies for sure!

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      • Heres a good question. Nolans usual suspects like Hardy, JGL, Bale are leading men now. With McCOnaughey as the lead don’t you think that rules them out? I cant see them being supporting actors here. I expect to see many new faces. What made Inception so great was the chemistry between the actors and JGL and Hardy weren’t stars at that point. They were very talented diamonds in the rough essentially. I hope Nolan can find that same sort of thing here.

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      • Very good point. That makes me wish JGL would get the lead role. It’s Nolan, sure, but JGL is getting huge and he was relegated to a supporting role in Nolan’s last two movies. I can’t think of anyone more deserving of the lead in a Nolan movie.

        But it’s pretty clear Interstellar is definitely a change for Nolan. Maybe he really is trying to rebrand himself and as such he’s going to go with a totally new cast. That would suck, sure. But he could cast snooki as the female lead and I’d still buy a ticket to the midnight screening.

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      • Haha snooki oh god. Well we still could see JGL as a supporting character I mean he was a very prominent role in The Dark Knight Rises as a supporting character. In fact ill be kind of surprised if he isn’t cast. I dont want to see JGL and Hardy both cast because that’s too much of a copy of Inception so I think only one will make it. I think itll be mostly new but thats exciting to see new actors also. I also found who McConaugheys character may be modeled after. They have the same name “Cooper” check this vid out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvPR8T1o3Dc&feature=player_embedded

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      • Wow, you might be onto something. Maybe it’s because I’m looking for it, but Cooper and McConaughey have similar mannerisms, it seems. Though it could be just coincidence.

        As for JGL, I’m confident he’ll have a role. He’s a rapidly rising star and he and Nolan work well together. Who knows, maybe the script has two lead roles and they’ll play off each other.

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      • Yeah itll be fun to see who is cast. McConaughey confirmed himself as the lead. I read Nolan was scouting locations over the weekend in Iceland. They’ll probabaly start filming mid summer.

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