News culture “No one paid attention… it was a failure” Christopher Nolan has seen this sci-fi film more than 100 times

Culture news “No one paid attention… it was a failure” Christopher Nolan has seen this sci-fi film more than 100 times

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Christopher Nolan is at the top of the “food chain” in Hollywood in 2024. One of the most influential and prolific directors, he recently won several Oscars for his film Oppenheimer. As a movie buff, he has watched hundreds or even thousands of films, including one more than 100 times even though it was a failure in theaters.

Oppenheimer, the new coronation of Christopher Nolan

Everything has been smiling for two decades for Christopher Nolan, who has established himself alongside Steven Spielberg, Quentin Tarantino, Ridley Scott and James Cameron among the greatest directors in Hollywood. His latest film is proof of that. His biopic with Cillian Murphy, Florence Pugh, Emily Blunt and Robert Downey Jr. grossed nearly a billion US dollars at the box office (US$975.8 million) and gleaned 7 statuettes at the 2024 Oscars ceremony : Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor, Best Music, Best Cinematography and Best Editing. Oppenheimer was THE film of 2023 during a year particularly rich in quality projects.

A failure that became a sci-fi classic

Christopher Nolan was born on July 30, 1970 in the city of London, England. He was therefore, by his own admission, too young to discover in theaters a film that would revolutionize his vision of cinema and create a subgenre of science fiction… cyberpunk. Blade Runner, directed by Ridley Scott (Alien the Eighth Passenger, Gladiator, Napoleon) was projected on the big screen in 1982 and struggled to cover its budget during its theatrical run. With 30 million US dollars committed, it only raised 41.8 million, making it a bitter commercial failure for the studios.

This dystopia subsequently became cult (notably thanks to the Director’s Cut and Final Cut versions) among film buffs and sci-fi fans. They rightly consider it one of the best representatives of cyberpunk and science fiction 42 years after its release. Blade Runner defined the “cyberpunk” aesthetic alongside the novel Neuromancer written by William Gibson two years later and left its mark on many minds including that of Christopher Nolan. He discovered the feature film on video and watched it hundreds of times, according to his comments in the Happy Sad Confused podcast.

Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner was a truly seminal film. All that science fiction and, somewhere, the Bond films. This meant to me the potential for box office success and glamorous cinema traveling the world. But Blade Runner, by Ridley Scott, I saw it for the first time on VHS. I was too young to go see it in the theater, you know, it was an R-rated movie. And even on that small screen, there was something about the immersion of that world, and the creation of that world m really spoke. And I’ve watched this movie hundreds of times, literally hundreds of times. -Christopher Nolan

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