Christopher Nolan is making a big bang with his new film Oppenheimer. The biographical drama about the development of the nuclear bomb had already been armed with Cillian Murphy and Emily Blunt, and now, via The Hollywood Reporter, it’s added the weapons-grade star power of Matt Damon and Robert Downey Jr.
Murphy stars as J. Robert Oppenheimer, the theoretical physicist who helped develop nuclear bombs, and whose later years were marked with disillusionment and ambivalence. Blunt plays his wife Kitty Oppenheimer, and Damon joins the team as another ally, Lt. Gen. Leslie Groves, the director of the Manhattan Project who stood by Oppenheimer during political turmoil.
Speaking of turmoil, Downey Jr. will enter the fray as Lewis Strauss. A complicated figure, Strauss lobbied the United States to accept more Jewish refugees during World War II, but today he is best remembered for minimizing the dangers of nuclear fallout and serving as the Atomic Energy Commissioner during controversial hearings that accused Oppenheimer of being a communist sympathizer.
Oppenheimer is based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book, American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer by Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin. The film is set for release on July 21st, 2023. Damon is coming off a star turn in Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel, while Downey Jr.’s post-Marvel career began with the 2020 movie Dolittle, which was nominated for a Razzie. Up next, Downey will star in HBO’s adaptation of The Sympathizer.