Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan came out swinging in support of buying the movie on Blu-ray instead of relying on a streaming service. The biographical blockbuster starring Cillian Murphy as theoretical physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer has grossed nearly $950 million globally at the box office.
During a Los Angeles screening of Oppenheimer on November 13, Nolan stressed the importance of the Universal Blu-ray release instead of relying on its availability on Peacock or some other streaming service. “Obviously Oppenheimer has been quite a ride for us and now it is time for me to release a home version of the film,” said Nolan. “I’ve been working very hard on it for months. I’m known for my love of theatrical and put my whole life into that, but the truth is, the way the film goes out at home is equally important.
“The Dark Knight was one of the first films where we formatted it specially for Blu-ray release because it was a new form at the time,” continued Nolan. “And in the case of Oppenheimer, we put a lot of care and attention into the Blu-ray version […] and trying to translate the photography and the sound, putting that into the digital realm with a version you can buy and own at home and put on a shelf so no evil streaming service can come steal it from you.”
Christopher Nolan said that the disc bonus features “don’t reveal my secrets,” but do provide some insight into how he shot the sure-to-be-Oscar-nominated film.
Christopher Nolan’s Comments Show Why Blu-rays Are Not Obsolete Yet
Lots of news reports have prematurely announced the death of DVD and Blu-ray, from Netflix canceling its DVD-by-mail service to the announcement that Best Buy will no longer sell Blu-rays beginning in 2024. Although it’s true that viewers now prefer the convenience of streaming to physical discs for casual viewing, it doesn’t mean that the latter has become obsolete. There are thousands of titles — especially more obscure cult films and TV shows — that are not available on streaming platforms. Also, streaming movies requires a fast broadband connection to approach the video and audio quality a disc provides. Collectors also appreciate the packaging, insert booklets, and bonus features that come packaged in DVDs, Blu-rays, and 4K UHDs.
Oppenheimer, a Universal release, will likely debut on the Peacock streaming service — but that doesn’t mean it will stay there forever. The title is likely to bounce around to several different streaming services every few months, just like most new releases. This means that unless you subscribe to every single streamer available, Oppenheimer won’t be accessible at all times via streaming. The one exception is if a customer buys a digital copy of the film on a TVOD service such as Vudu or Prime Video. In theory, that digital copy — along with any digital featurettes — would remain in your account permanently.
Still, the only way to make sure to have unrestricted access to Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer is to buy the movie on disc.
Oppenheimer drops on DVD, Blu-ray, and 4K Ultra HD on November 21.
Robert DeSalvo is a professional writer and editor with over 25 years of experience at print and online publications such as Movieline, Playboy, PCH, Fandango, and The A.V. Club. He currently lives in Los Angeles, the setting of his favorite movie, Blade Runner. Robert has interviewed dozens of actors, directors, authors, musicians, and other celebrities during his journalism career, including Brian De Palma, Nicolas Cage, Dustin Hoffman, John Waters, Sigourney Weaver, Julianne Moore, Bryan Cranston, Anne Rice, and many more. Horror movies, sci-fi, cult films as well as gothic, postpunk, and synthwave music are what Robert geeks over.