‘Oppenheimer’ Trailer Unveils Christopher Nolan’s Atomic Bomb Epic

“I don’t know if we can be trusted with such a weapon. But we have no choice.”

Cillian Murphy’s J. Robert Oppenheimer is deeply conflicted about the atom bomb’s creation in the first trailer for director Christopher Nolan’s buzzed-about thriller Oppenheimer.

“We imagine a future and our imaginings horrify us,” narrates Murphy as the theoretical physicist credited with inventing world’s first nuclear weapon.

“They won’t fear it until they understand it. And they won’t understand it until they’ve used it.”

(NBC Universal)

As the director of the laboratory that designed and assembled the first atomic bombs, Oppenheimer was instrumental in the success of the Manhattan Project, the government-backed venture tasked with creating nuclear weapons that was formed shortly after the United States entered WWII.

Oppenheimer’s bombs would ultimately be used in the field against the Japanese targets of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, killing tens of thousands but leading to the Empire of Japan’s surrender and the end of WWII.

“I don’t know if we can be trusted with such a weapon,” the narration continues. “But we have no choice.”

(Universal Pictures)

The movie, based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning biographical novel American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer by Kai Bird and the late Martin J. Sherwin, was adapted for the screen by Nolan, who also serves as director and producer.

Nolan previously revealed that he and the production team recreated the pivotal nuclear explosion code-named “Trinity Test” without “computer graphics.”

In additional to these highly anticipated practical effects, moviegoers can also look forward to an A-List cast. Murphy is joined in Oppenheimer by Emily Blunt as his wife, biologist and botanist Katherine “Kitty” Oppenheimer, Matt Damon as Manhattan Project director General Leslie Groves Jr., and Robert Downey Jr. as Lewis Strauss, a founding commissioner of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission.

Oppenheimer premieres exclusively in theaters on July 21, 2023.