The moment Cillian Murphy lands a leading role in Oppenheimer
Cillian Murphy will play J. Robert Oppenheimer, the man appointed to run the secret laboratory of the Manhattan Project. And here is a snippet from the interview.
In fact, this star has been working with writer-director Christopher Nolan for more than two decades. Now, Cillian Murphy takes on her biggest starring role to date, in the upcoming Nolan biopic Oppenheimer.
Cillian Murphy will play J. Robert Oppenheimer, the man appointed to run the secret laboratory of the Manhattan Project. Here’s a little interview with Murphy quoted by Collider about preparing for this role and how he went about “experimenting and exploring” on set with Nolan.
With a uniquely written script, and unlike anything Murphy has received before, oppenheimer giving him the opportunity to once again explore the existential themes Nolan’s films love, this time in the title role.
Calling himself a “Nolan veteran,” Murphy has appeared as a supporting actor in many of Nolan’s most notable films, ranging from Batman Begins 2005 to Beginning. Today, he leads an illustrious lineup that includes Robert Downey Jr., Florence Pugh, Emily Blunt, Matt Damon, Gary Oldman, Josh Hartnett, and David Dastmalchian.
Murphy explained what it was like to receive that phone call from Nolan, how long it took him to prepare for filming, and why this scenario caught him off guard.
We also found out what kind of feedback Nolan gave on set, which Oppenheimer scenes were the most difficult to shoot. Let’s see the excerpt from the interview:
what movie also oppenheimerWhat would people want to see first if they have never seen your movie before?
Cillian said with a laugh: “That’s a good question. I hate watching my own movies. [tertawa]. There is a film that I really like that I made in Ireland called The Wind That Shakes the Barley, which is a film that I am very proud of.
It’s a bit of information about Irish history, but it’s a beautifully crafted film by Ken Loach.
you used to work with [Christopher] Nolan, but what exactly is it like when he calls you and says, “I’m thinking of doing Oppenheimer. Do I want you to play the part? As an actor, how did he feel when he received that call?
Murphy responded: “I think any actor in the world would, firstly, want to work with Chris, but secondly, be in the lead for him. I can’t think of a better word than dreaming.
It sounds cliché, but it is the truth. But I didn’t know that he would call me. Suddenly she called me. That is the modus operandi; You never hear from him and then he calls you.
[Tertawa] So he called me, and he really had no idea what it was going to be, and he said, “I’m making this movie about Oppenheimer, and I want you to play Oppenheimer.” It’s a big surprise and a lot of fun, but then you’re like, “Okay, now I’ve got a lot of work to do.”
You hang up the phone with him and immediately think, like, “Do I have to start studying?”
“Yes, exactly like that. He told me the day we started shooting, so I knew I had six months to really get in. It would have taken longer, but six months is good. We’ve been at it ever since that day. We love.
One of the things about this movie is that it was shot with IMAX cameras, and it’s amazing, but as an actor, because it’s such a big camera, how does it feel to be around you and you know that each shot costs a lot, and it’s also very expensive.
“I’m a bit of a Nolan veteran, so I’m a bit used to big cameras and the racket they make. We have an amazing cinematographer, Hoyte Van Hoytema, and an amazing camera crew, so it wasn’t a big deal after a while.
If you start thinking, “Oh, this is going to be my 80 foot wide face…”, you can’t think of it that way. Chris had never talked about it like that. He only cared about appearances and what was happening at the time and the truth of the scene.
I bet when you look at the schedule and see everything you’re going to do, you’ve probably marked off a day or two with the terms “Oh, it’s probably going to be a tough day.” What’s a day or two you’ve circled when you weren’t too heavy? What is required of you that day?
“To be honest, everyone is like that (he said laughing). But the part of the film that I like to work on the most is the part indoors, in 2022, when we are all on trial. We shot in this shitty little room.
There are no moving walls or anything like that; all of us there with this great camera. It almost felt like putting on a play. We did that for two weeks, so that all these amazing actors, Jason Clarke and everyone, would come and do their part.
I found it very emotional and heavy, but in a brilliant way. It was a real challenge. So those are my favorite movies in terms of shooting.
I was fascinated by the way directors make movies. Clearly Chris is looking for something in every take and knows exactly what he wants. How is he working when he doesn’t get what he wants from you? Can you talk a little bit about how he directs you?
“He’s brilliant with actors, he understands actors, he loves actors, he really believes in actors and what they can bring to stories and characters. Very often we will find it.
We would film, but we would find the scene, and he would let us experiment and explore things.
Then he could walk in, and he’ll just whisper very softly in your ear. In general, the notes are precise, concise and laconic, but they can totally enhance the interpretation.
That’s the genius. It also comes from the fact that he wrote it, so he had direct access to it, but it’s phenomenal, absolutely phenomenal.
I saw this last night on an IMAX 70mm and it was amazing. First of all, the movie is amazing, but look at it in that light. Have you seen it in IMAX, 70mm?
“I haven’t seen it in IMAX 70mm. I will, I’m looking forward to it. I’ve seen other Chris movies in that format and can’t wait to see them.
Will it change you a bit when you see your face on that big screen? Some of the actors I spoke to, they couldn’t really look at themselves.
“I didn’t enjoy it. I don’t know many actors who like to look at themselves. But I like to see it with an audience because that’s cinema, right?
Lots of strangers in a dark room are collectively involved in this, so seeing it alone in a screening room just isn’t the same. I want to see it with the public.
100%. I’ve seen movies like yours in a small room with nobody, and it just doesn’t have the same impact, the energy of everyone.
I’m curious, how did you feel reading the script the first time because he wrote Oppenheimer’s stuff in a different way? Can you talk a bit about that?
“So he wrote the script in the first person, which I never knew or experienced. He blew my mind.
Also, I realized that it was a big responsibility because everything is subjectively through Oppenheimer’s eyes, except for the black and white part which is objectively from the point of view. [Lewis] Strauss (Robert Downey Jr.).
It is one of the best scripts I have read, without a doubt. For example, you would not say: “Oppenheimer came into the room and spoke to Strauss.”
It read: “I went into the room” and “I went over and talked to Strauss.” This is how it is written.
I couldn’t imagine being an actor because you’ve read so many scripts. Never like this.
“Never. Well, not in my experience. I’m sure all scripts would be like this by now. [Tertawa] They would all imitate Chris.
That would not be a surprise. If you were making a Nolan movie with Oppenheimer, what other movies would you see with him?
Good question. Do you think it should complement it, or can it be random?
Can be anything.
“You probably chose Interstellar, right? Which, I really liked that movie. If you want a complete palette cleanser, you can check out The Prestige, which I also think is one of Chris’s underrated but brilliant movies. I don’t know. What do you think?”
Inception will be interesting. As long as I can see it in an IMAX theater, it’s going to be great.
Yes the same.
Last I told you, Oppenheimer, it was about three hours, but I guess there were deleted scenes. Do you remember any deleted scenes or many deleted scenes?
There are no deleted scenes or deleted scenes in Chris Nolan movies.
That’s why there are no bonus DVDs in the movie because the script is the movie. He knew exactly how it was going to end, he didn’t play around with it trying to change history. That’s the movie.
oppenheimer will be broadcast in Indonesia on July 19, 2023. Wait for it at the nearest cinema in your city.