Christopher Nolan is traversing the science fiction genre with Interstellar, a project he’s gearing up to direct based on a script written by his brother Jonathan (co-writer of The Dark Knight and Dark Knight Rises) and inspired by the theories of Caltech astrophysicist Kip Thorn.
Steven Spielberg set up Interstellar back in 2006, but ultimately decided J. Nolan’s premise wasn’t a good match for his storytelling sensibilities. The filmmaker’s new sci-fi project, Robopocalypse, is currently getting a script makeover; that’s also the case with the Nolan brothers’ next collaboration, now what Chris is revamping the original screenplay draft.
Deadline claims that C. Nolan is merging “an original idea of his” into his sibling’s script, which charts a daring space odyssey “to the farthest borders of our scientific understanding.” That appears to be the pair’s writing modus operandi, starting with Chris basing Memento on Jonathan’s story “Memento Mori.” (Or is that just how he remembers it?) Similarly, J. Nolan oversaw adapting Christopher Priest’s novel The Prestige – before Chris took the reins – and his Tale of Two Cities-inspired Dark Knight Rises draft was actually streamlined into the final film (believe it or not).
It’s reasonable to think the aforementioned “original idea” C. Nolan’s incorporating into his brother’s 2001-esque creation may be one of his recognizable motifs – for example, an obsessive protagonist or themes about the nature of perception – and the story (rumored to involve a journey through wormholes) lends itself to similar ideas examined in the sci-fi contexts of The Prestige and Inception. Or maybe he’s just writing a character specifically for Michael Caine (kidding, folks… sort of).
The Kubruckian overtones of Interstellar make it an intriguing fit for Chris Nolan’s storytelling style and mise-en-scène (re: visual composition); plus, wormholes present an obvious narrative device for jumping around in time (as he’s inclined to do, regardless). Similarly, with modern technology at his disposal – and Nolan’s Oscar-winning cinematographer Wally Pfister coming off his own ambitious sci-fi directorial effort, Transcendence (assuming the pair reunites) – the portrayal of space flight could be something to admire.
Technically, Chris Nolan’s not locked down to direct Interstellar but the news of him rewriting the script can be interpreted as all but an official confirmation. Count us excited to see how the film pans out.