The last film legendary British director Christopher Nolan made was Tenet, which wrapped production in November of 2019. Since then, it has been assumed that Nolan has spent all his time in his figurative batcave, writing the screenplay for the upcoming wartime epic, Oppenheimer.

Today, we have our first glimpse at the teaser trailer for Oppenheimer… and it looks like a vintage Christopher Nolan masterpiece in the making.

The American historical drama, which is based on the 2005 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimerwritten by Kai Bird and the late Martin J. Sherwin. Cillian Murphy leads the ensemble as J. Robert Oppenheimer, the theoretical physicist who was credited as one of the “founding fathers” of the atomic bomb, and criticised for his role in the Manhattan Project – the World War II development that ultimately led to the first nuclear weapons (and subsequently, the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki).

Murphy, who first teamed with Christopher Nolan on Batman Begins (2005) and later starred in Nolan’s Inception (2010), The Dark Knight Rises (2012) and Dunkirk (2017), leads a star-studded cast including Nolan-veterans in Kenneth Branagh and Gary Oldman, as well as Robert Downey Jr., Matt Damon, Emily Blunt, Florence Pugh, Rami Malek, Benny Safdie, Josh Hartnett, Dane DeHaan, Jack Quaid, Matthew Modine, Alden Ehrenreich and David Krumholtz.

With Universal winning the bidding war for the highly sort after project, the $100 million production will undoubtedly prove a challenging commercial proposition given its subject matter. It’s believed that Universal is taking a bet on the film simply because Christopher Nolan is at the helm, according to Variety.

Apparently, Universal isn’t the only player involved who believes in Nolan’s vision. Reportedly, the A-list cast such as Robert Downey Jr., Matt Damon and Emily Blunt are only receiving a fee of $4 million apiece for their supporting roles in Oppenheimer (Downey Jr. alone would normally command $10-$20 million a film). However, like other notable celebrities with a knack for contractural loopholes, should ‘Oppenheimer’ beats the odds to be a blockbuster hit, they could all respectively profit handsomely.

Oppenheimer will be shot partly on Imax 65mm and 65mm large-format film, with Nolan recruiting  Dutch cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema (Tenet, DunkirkInterstellar). Ludwig Göransson will compose the score, who also worked with Nolan on Tenet.

Universal has set a theatrical release date of July 21, 2023.