Christopher Nolan’s ‘Oppenheimer’ Adds Florence Pugh, Rami Malek, Benny Safdie

Universal Pictures isn’t messing around with their first collaboration with famed filmmaker Christopher Nolan; Oppenheimer will have his most impressive cast yet.


The Hollywood Reporter has dropped the news that Florence Pugh (Midsommar, Black Widow), Rami Malek (Mr. Robot, No Time To Die), and Benny Safdie (Good Time, Obi-Wan Kenobi) are joining the stellar ensemble that already contains Cillian Murphy, Emily Blunt, Matt Damon, and Robert Downey Jr. That’s a big lot of huge Hollywood A-listers. Despite the more restrained nature of the project, this won’t be a cheap one to make.


Universal has described the film as an “epic thriller that thrusts audiences into the pulse-pounding paradox of the enigmatic man who must risk destroying the world in order to save it.” If anyone can make a biopic feel huge and tense, that’s Christopher Nolan. With Dunkirk, he proved he could deliver the goodies within a historical setting, so I’m ready to see what he comes up with in a full-blown biopic. I prefer his weird and loopy extravaganzas, such as last year’s Tenet (which was more divisive than his previous efforts), but I won’t lie: he has my unconditional attention.


Murphy leads the cast, portraying the physicist who helped develop the atomic bomb during World War II. Pugh will play Jean Tatlock, a member of the Communist Party of the United States who had an affair with Oppenheimer. Safdie will play Edward Teller, the Hungarian physicist known as the father of the hydrogen bomb and a member of the Manhattan Project. Malek is playing a yet-to-be-revealed scientist. Blunt stars as Oppenheimer’s wife, Katherine Oppenheimer. Damon portrays Lt. Gen. Leslie Groves, the director of the Manhattan Project. Downey Jr. is playing Lewis Strauss, the infamous chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission.


The feature will be written and directed by Christopher Nolan. Universal will distribute the film, which is set to bow in theaters on July 21, 2023, two weeks before the 78th anniversary of Hiroshima’s bombing.