Runtime Speculation

The upcoming epic thriller based on J. Robert Oppenheimer, the enigmatic man who must risk destroying the world in order to save it.
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So we have this picture of Matt Damon with what is almost centainly the screenplay.
Now the speculation about the runtime can begin.

Here is my take:

You see the bending of the first few pages so I am sure that it is "normal" paper and not something extra-thick.

I just assume that it is the complete screenplay without any "extras".

I asked 6 different writers in our "Filmmakers Germany" facebook group and they all said that it has to be around 160-220 pages.

I then took some normal paper, counted it and stacked it so I would get close to the same thickness as in the picture. 180 pages it was. Let's just assume that the screenplay has around 180 pages.

That would make it Nolan's longest screenplay to date ... IF ... Nolan's screenplays that are out there are the ones he starts production with. There is almost no info about deleted scenes on his films and I don't know if these deleted scenes are in the scripts or if they also get deleted from them after the film is finished.

Here is an overview of his Films, the script length and the runtime:

MEMENTO - 135 pages - 133min
INSOMNIA - 130 pages - 138min
BATMAN BEGINS - 150 pages - 140min
THE PRESTIGE - 128 pages - 130min
TDK - 141 pages - 152min
INCEPTION - 147 pages - 148min
TDKR - 165 pages - 165min
INTERSTELLAR - 157 pages - 169min
DUNKIRK - 82 pages - 106min
TENET - 148 pages - 150min

Assuming there aren't a tons of deleted scenes in each film they are always pretty accurate to the "1 page = 1min" rule of thumb (except maybe DUNKIRK for obvious reasons)

Does that mean we will get our first Nolan film that clocks in at over 3 hours?
Probably not but I wouldn't rule it out.

First, there are still the IMAX reel limatations but in 2009 James Cameron wanted to show a special cut of Avatar and the limit was somehow lifted from 2:30 to 2:50 (?). So maybe Nolan and IMAX will do something similar. They are already working on new cameras together so why not also on presentation equipment?

Then there is this enormous cast and the book "American Prometheus" and I think a lot of scenes might really end up on the cutting room floor. Sort of like Tarantino in INGLORIOUS BASTERDS - shooting way "too much" and then in the editing process "dicovering" the final version.

And then there is the thriller element to the film and I think Universal described it as a "Thriller" wich also makes me think: "Are there GOOD thrillers that are around 3hrs? Does a Thriller even work at 3hrs?"

So we will almost centainly get a film that is over 2,5hrs, maybe even over 2:49 (Interstellar) and I am all up for it! My prediction is 2:52.

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Without Lee Smith to make his ambitious screenplays presentable for a large audience, Nolan is no better than Zack Snyder.

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I care more about pacing and storytelling than the running time specifically, but I think a long runtime would be suitable. With the cast and the story, a lengthy runtime would help to give the film weight and time, which it would need to have. I'm personally game for a long film and Nolan has needed that to make his stories even remotely work, though I'd love it if he was willing to do another 1:40 movie.

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Waitedalongtime wrote:
May 9th, 2022, 1:40 pm
I care more about pacing and storytelling than the running time specifically, but I think a long runtime would be suitable. With the cast and the story, a lengthy runtime would help to give the film weight and time, which it would need to have. I'm personally game for a long film and Nolan has needed that to make his stories even remotely work, though I'd love it if he was willing to do another 1:40 movie.
"Interstellar should have been 2 hours" is something I actually saw 2-3 major critics (though one of them was Doug Walker, who seriously complained about the fact that one of the planets consisted of snowy mountains and was bothered by the fact that that location popped up in some of his previous films) say at the time. Even if you think it could have shorter, 2 hours for that story is ridiculous. Even if it was 2 hours and 10 minutes, you'd probably loose a lot unless you were really selective.

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Mr. Alley wrote:
May 9th, 2022, 7:36 am
Image

So we have this picture of Matt Damon with what is almost centainly the screenplay.
Now the speculation about the runtime can begin.

Here is my take:

You see the bending of the first few pages so I am sure that it is "normal" paper and not something extra-thick.

I just assume that it is the complete screenplay without any "extras".

I asked 6 different writers in our "Filmmakers Germany" facebook group and they all said that it has to be around 160-220 pages.

I then took some normal paper, counted it and stacked it so I would get close to the same thickness as in the picture. 180 pages it was. Let's just assume that the screenplay has around 180 pages.

That would make it Nolan's longest screenplay to date ... IF ... Nolan's screenplays that are out there are the ones he starts production with. There is almost no info about deleted scenes on his films and I don't know if these deleted scenes are in the scripts or if they also get deleted from them after the film is finished.

Here is an overview of his Films, the script length and the runtime:

MEMENTO - 135 pages - 133min
INSOMNIA - 130 pages - 138min
BATMAN BEGINS - 150 pages - 140min
THE PRESTIGE - 128 pages - 130min
TDK - 141 pages - 152min
INCEPTION - 147 pages - 148min
TDKR - 165 pages - 165min
INTERSTELLAR - 157 pages - 169min
DUNKIRK - 82 pages - 106min
TENET - 148 pages - 150min

Assuming there aren't a tons of deleted scenes in each film they are always pretty accurate to the "1 page = 1min" rule of thumb (except maybe DUNKIRK for obvious reasons)

Does that mean we will get our first Nolan film that clocks in at over 3 hours?
Probably not but I wouldn't rule it out.

First, there are still the IMAX reel limatations but in 2009 James Cameron wanted to show a special cut of Avatar and the limit was somehow lifted from 2:30 to 2:50 (?). So maybe Nolan and IMAX will do something similar. They are already working on new cameras together so why not also on presentation equipment?

Then there is this enormous cast and the book "American Prometheus" and I think a lot of scenes might really end up on the cutting room floor. Sort of like Tarantino in INGLORIOUS BASTERDS - shooting way "too much" and then in the editing process "dicovering" the final version.

And then there is the thriller element to the film and I think Universal described it as a "Thriller" wich also makes me think: "Are there GOOD thrillers that are around 3hrs? Does a Thriller even work at 3hrs?"

So we will almost centainly get a film that is over 2,5hrs, maybe even over 2:49 (Interstellar) and I am all up for it! My prediction is 2:52.
wow great work man

KEM
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2 hours and 12 minutes

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I'd say around 150min

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JFK is one of my favorite thrillers, similar world as well, and it's 3 and a half hours.

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