Christopher Nolan to receive knighthood for services to film

Nolan’s ‘Oppenheimer’ won seven Oscars at the 2024 Academy Awards

Tom Murray
Thursday 28 March 2024 18:17 GMT
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Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan and his wife producer Emma Thomas are to receive a knighthood and damehood for their services to film.

The news comes after Nolan’s biopic about the “father of the Atomic Bomb” swept the 2024 Oscars, winning him Best Director and Best Picture.

The film won a total of seven Oscars out of the 13 categories it was nominated in, including Best Actor for lead star Cillian Murphy and Best Supporting Actor for Robert Downey Jr.

Nolan had previously been nominated for six Academy Awards for pondering important questions throughout his body of work, but had never won an Oscar for directing until this year’s ceremony.

Nolan has collaborated with Murphy for nearly two decades, including on Batman Begins, Inception, Dunkirk and briefly in The Dark Knight Rises.

Born in London to a British father and American mother, Nolan read English at University College London (UCL), choosing the school because of its filmmaking facilities.

Christopher Nolan
Christopher Nolan (Getty Images)

It is also where he met his future wife, Thomas, with whom he has four children and runs a production company, Syncopy, and has also worked with across his filmmaking.

Nolan kept his Oscars acceptance speech mostly industry-focused, thanking his stars, who are “all at the top of their game” and his “incredible crew”.

He reserved a special shout out for his wife, Emma Thomas, who has worked as a producer on all of his films since 1997. “Producer of all our films, and all our children,” said Nolan. “I love you.”

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Earlier this month, it was reported that Nolan was set to earn a “staggering” bonus after Oppenheimer passes $1bn at the global box office.

It was made on a budget of $100m and earned $958m worldwide after its release alongside Barbie on 19 July last year.

Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan
Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan (PA Wire)

The win marked Oppenheimer as the highest-grossing Best Picture winner since The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.

Nolan recently welcomed a tax relief for those making independent movies, after chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced the Government will provide eligible film studios in England with 40% relief on their gross business rates until 2034.

He and Thomas said in a joint statement: “Independent and lower-budget filmmaking is where we had our start and where new voices and innovations vital to the entire industry are born.

“This enhanced tax relief builds on the incredible work already being done by British filmmakers and will create new opportunities for British crews, filmmakers and cast members for years to come.”

Additional reporting by the Press Association

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