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Christopher Nolan wins his first Oscar for directing Oppenheimer, thanks ‘those who have believed in me my whole career’

Mar 11, 2024 09:59 AM IST

Christopher Nolan wins his first Oscar for directing Oppenheimer. The biopic drama won a leading seven awards at the ceremony.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Christopher Nolan has fulfilled his award show frontrunner status, winning his first Oscar on Sunday night for directing Oppenheimer. The 53-year-old British visionary has garnered critical acclaim throughout his career, but had never won an Oscar until now. He was nominated for directing Dunkirk in 2017 and for original screenplay in 2010 for “Inception” and in 2001 for Memento. (Also read: Oscars 2024 full list of winners: Oppenheimer wins Best Picture, Christopher Nolan named Best Director)

Nolan wins first Oscar

Christopher Nolan poses in the press room with the awards for best director and best picture for "Oppenheimer" at the Oscars on Sunday, March 10, 2024, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)(Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Nolan beat out Jonathan Glazer of The Zone of Interest, Yorgos Lanthimos of Poor Things, Martin Scorsese of Killers of the Flower Moon, and Justine Triet of Anatomy of a Fall. At 81, Martin Scorsese was the oldest directing nominee. In his acceptance speech, he said: “To the Academy — movies are just a little bit over 100 years old. We don’t know where this incredible journey is going from here. But to know that you think I’m a meaningful part of it means the world to me… Thank you to those who have believed in me my whole career.”

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Nolan was cheered on by his wife, Emma Thomas, who twice shared best picture nominations with her husband for producing Dunkirk and Inception. The college sweethearts have been producing partners on all of his films since 1997. Nolan had been the frontrunner throughout awards season, earning the top prize from the Directors Guild of America along with directing honors at the BAFTA Film Awards and Golden Globes.

More details

Besides directing, Nolan earned nominations for adapted screenplay and best picture for Oppenheimer, the three-hour, ambitious, R-rated epic about the American physicist who developed the atomic bomb. The film earned a leading 13 nominations and has earned nearly $1 billion worldwide.

The auteur filmmaker is known for a style that favors documentary-style lighting, hand-held cameras and on-location shooting rather than indoor studios. He has been regularly praised by many of his contemporaries, including Scorsese, who has hailed Nolan for creating “beautifully made films on a big scale.”

Among his other credits are Tenet, Interstellar and the Batman trilogy of Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises.

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