Tenet Trailer Reveals Time Inversion Plot for Christopher Nolan’s Next Movie

It’s “coming to theatres” — whenever they reopen.

Tenet Trailer Reveals Time Inversion Plot for Christopher Nolan’s Next Movie

Photo Credit: Warner Bros.

Dimple Kapadia in the new Tenet trailer

  • Tenet release date is currently set for July 17 worldwide
  • New Tenet trailer tells us how Nolan’s sci-fi film works
  • Tenet needs 80% of the world’s theatres to release in July

Tenet trailer is here, and the movie is still supposed to open in theatres — though perhaps not in July as originally planned. Warner Bros. has unveiled a near three-minute look at Christopher Nolan's next movie, which gives us a better idea of what it's about (the prevention of World War III) and how it works. Tenet doesn't involve time travel, just as star Robert Pattinson had said in an interview earlier this month, but rather — time inversion. Fellow star John David Washington says as much in the Tenet trailer, before dropping us into a live tutorial as the lead star “fires” a bullet. Clémence Poésy explains: “You're not shooting the bullet. You're catching it.”

Tenet trailer

Later, the Tenet trailer gives us our first look at the characters played by Kenneth Branagh and Himesh Patel, and the first dialogue for Dimple Kapadia: “There are people in the future who need us, who need Tenet.” The Tenet trailer also includes a few scenes that were shown in the six-minute IMAX-only prologue — the ones that take place in a performance hall. Pattinson and Washington close out the Tenet trailer with a jokey conversation about crashing a plane, not in the air, but on the ground.

The world has turned on its head since we got our first look at Tenet in December last year, but Nolan and Warner Bros. are reportedly still interested in releasing Tenet in mid-July, as originally announced. The end of the Tenet trailer — which simply says “coming to theatres” instead of the July release date — suggests they aren't fully confident, and for good reason. Cinemas are shut globally due to the pandemic, and Tenet is one of just two films for July. Every other studio has given up and moved its slate to August or beyond.

And Tenet might do the same if enough theatres don't reopen in time. Warner Bros. reportedly needs 80 percent of the world's cinemas to be functional to release Tenet in July. It's impossible to say right now whether that will happen. But what's also possible is that Indians might not get to see Tenet in July, given the pandemic situation in the country, and the few number of screens in total that would screen Tenet. India could easily end up being part of that remaining 20 percent.

Tenet cast

In addition to Pattinson, Washington, Poésy, Branagh, Patel, and Kapadia, Tenet also stars Elizabeth Debicki, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Michael Caine, and Denzil Smith. Nolan wrote and directed Tenet. Nolan is also a producer on Tenet alongside wife Emma Thomas. Tenet filmed in seven countries across three continents, including India, Denmark, Estonia, Italy, Norway, the UK, and the US.

Tenet plot

“John David Washington is the new Protagonist in Christopher Nolan's original sci-fi action spectacle “Tenet.” Armed with only one word—Tenet—and fighting for the survival of the entire world, the Protagonist journeys through a twilight world of international espionage on a mission that will unfold in something beyond real time. Not time travel. Inversion.”

Tenet release date

Tenet is currently slated to release July 17 worldwide.

Can Netflix force Bollywood to reinvent itself? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS. You can also download the episode or just hit the play button below.


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Akhil Arora
Akhil Arora covers entertainment for Gadgets 360, interviewing stars such as Christian Bale and Anurag Kashyap, covering series premieres, product and service launches across the globe, and looking at American blockbusters and Indian dramas from a global socio-political and feminist perspective. As a Rotten Tomatoes-certified film critic, Akhil has reviewed over 150 movies and TV shows in over half a decade at Gadgets 360. When he is not completely caught up with new film and TV releases, Akhil ...More
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