Cillian Murphy Declares Christopher Nolan’s ‘Oppenheimer’ Script Is “The Best Script I Ever Read”

Actor Cillian Murphy recently shared that the script for Christopher Nolan’s upcoming Oppenheimer film is “the best script I ever read.”

Oppenheimer poster

In a discussion with Nolan about their working relationship that includes The Dark Knight trilogy, Inception, Dunkirk, and the upcoming Oppenheimer remarked how Nolan calling him up to play J. Robert Oppenheimer “was one of the best days of my life.”

Muprhy continued, “I’ll always turn up for Chris, no matter what the part is, but, secretly, it’s a dream to play a lead part. The thing was, I had no idea. There was no preamble or anything, I just got the call. So it was incredibly exciting, and daunting, and terrifying, all at the same time.”

OPPENHEIMER, written and directed by Christopher Nolan

RELATED: ‘Oppenheimer’ Special Effects Supervisor Reveals How The Film Recreates The Trinity Nuclear Explosion

Murphy went on to assert, “I’ll say this, it’s the best script I ever read, that’s for sure.”

Nolan then recounted when he first gave the script to Murphy to read and that the script was written in the first person, “I flew over to Dublin to hand you the script, you read it in my hotel room, I went off to look at the Francis Bacon installation in the Hugh Lane [Gallery], and then came back. I’m actually curious if the fact that the script was written in the first person will have added to the feeling of responsibility that you were going to have taking it on.”

OPPENHEIMER, written and directed by Christopher Nolan

Murphy responded, “Yes, massively. That’s the only script that I’ve ever read that’s been in the first person. It took me a minute, maybe a bit more than a minute, to figure that out. But then it became clear that you wanted it to be completely subjective, that everything was to be seen through the character’s eyes as it were, and, again, yeah, that added massively to the terror.”

“But when it’s Christopher Nolan, you just have that confidence. You believe 100 percent in his vision, as I have always done. So it was terribly exciting,” Murphy added.

OPPENHEIMER, written and directed by Christopher Nolan

RELATED: Christopher Nolan Reveals He Used Cillian Murphy’s Failed Audition For The Dark Knight To Get Him Cast As Scarecrow in ‘Batman Begins’

Murphy would also recount, “Every day, you had these phenomenal actors, who are heroes of mine, coming in. Every day, you were having to raise your game to work with these legends. Everybody was so unbelievably well-prepared.”

“Every single actor, no matter what size their role or the significance of their character in history, each one of them had this massive depth of knowledge that they could draw on,” he recalled.

OPPENHEIMER, written and directed by Christopher Nolan

In fact, Nolan revealed this applied to the extras at well and their presence even made it more paramount that the film needed to faithful to the actual events.

He detailed, “I was thinking that it even applied to the extras. We were in the real Los Alamos and we had a lot of real scientists as extras. We needed the crowd of extras to give reactions, and improvise, and we were getting sort of impromptu, very educated speeches. It was really fun to listen to.”

“You’ve been on sets where you’ve got a lot of extras around and they’re more or less thinking about lunch,” Nolan continued. “These guys were thinking about the geopolitical implications of nuclear arms and knew a lot about it. It actually was a great reminder every day of: We have to be really on our game, we have to be faithful to the history here, and really know what we’re up to.”

OPPENHEIMER, written and directed by Christopher Nolan

Oppenheimer is based on Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin’s book American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer and “thrusts audiences into the pulse-pounding paradox of the enigmatic man who must risk destroying the world in order to save it.”

Alongside Murphy, the film stars Emily Blunt as Katherine ‘Kitty’ Oppenheimer, Matt Damon as General Leslie Groves Jr., the director of the Manhattan Project, and Robert Downey Jr. as Lewis Strauss, the founding commissioner of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission.

Emily Blunt as Katherine ‘Kitty’ Oppenheimer and Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer in Oppenheimer (2023), Universal Pictures

RELATED: Christopher Nolan Reveals Upcoming ‘Oppenheimer’ Biopic Used Practical Effects To Recreate Trinity Nuclear Test Blast

It also features Florence Pugh as psychiatrist Jean Tatlock, Benny Safdie as theoretical physicist Edward Teller, Michael Angarano as Robert Serber, and Josh Hartnett as nuclear scientist Ernest Lawrence.

Other members of the cast include Rami Malek, Kenneth Branagh, Dane DeHaan, Dylan Arnold, Alden Ehrenreich, and Matthew Modine.

Oppenheimer arrives in theaters on July 21, 2023.

Oppenheimer poster

What do you make of Murphy’s comments about the film’s script and the expertise the cast brought to the set?

NEXT: Report: Tom Cruise Is “Pretty Pissed” That Christopher Nolan’s ‘Oppenheimer’ Will Bump ‘Mission: Impossible—Dead Reckoning Part One’ From IMAX Screens

John F. Trent

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