Interstellar (film)

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Against a black backdrop, the title "Interstellar" is written downward and ends above a horizon that depicts a silhouette of farm buildings. The title starts with "INTER" in white letters, and a white flare effect from the horizon upward is behind "STELLAR" in black letters.
Teaser poster
Directed by Christopher Nolan
Produced by
Written by
Music by Hans Zimmer
Cinematography Hoyte van Hoytema
Edited by Lee Smith
Distributed by
Release date(s)
  • November 6, 2014 (2014-11-06) (United Kingdom)
  • November 7, 2014 (2014-11-07) (North America)
Country United States
United Kingdom
Language English

Interstellar is an upcoming science fiction film directed by Christopher Nolan. Starring Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, Bill Irwin, Ellen Burstyn, and Michael Caine, the film features a team of space travelers who travel through a wormhole. It was written by Jonathan Nolan and Christopher Nolan, who combined his idea with an existing script by his brother that was developed in 2007 for Paramount Pictures and producer Lynda Obst. Nolan is producing the film with Obst and Emma Thomas.

Warner Bros., who produced and distributed Nolan's previous films, negotiated with Paramount, traditionally a rival studio, to have a financial stake in Interstellar. Legendary Pictures, which formerly partnered with Warner Bros., also sought a stake. The three companies co-financed the film, and the production companies Syncopy and Lynda Obst Productions were enlisted. The director also hired cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema since his long-time collaborator Wally Pfister was busy working on Transcendence, his directorial debut. Interstellar is being filmed with a combination of anamorphic 35mm and IMAX film photography. Filming took place in the last quarter of 2013 in locations in the province of Alberta, Canada, in southern Iceland, and in Los Angeles, California.

Interstellar is scheduled to be released in theaters in November 2014. It will be released in Belgium, France, and Switzerland on November 5, 2014 and be released in additional territories in the following days, including the United Kingdom on November 6, 2014 and North America (United States and Canada) on November 7, 2014. Paramount will distribute the film in North America, and Warner Bros. will distribute the film in remaining territories.


When a wormhole (which theoretically can connect widely-separated regions of spacetime) is discovered, explorers and scientists unite to embark on a voyage through it, transcending the limits of human space travel.[1] Among the travelers is a widowed engineer (McConaughey) who has to decide to leave behind his two children to join the voyage with the goal of saving humanity.[2]


In April 2013, Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway were cast in the film's starring roles.[9] Director Christopher Nolan said he became interested in casting McConaughey after seeing him in an early cut of the 2012 film Mud.[10] He called McConaughey's character an everyman with whom "the audience could experience the story".[11]

Other well-known actors eventually joined what would become "an all-star cast".[12] Actor Irrfan Khan said he declined a role since he wanted to be in India for the releases of The Lunchbox and D-Day.[13] Actor Matt Damon was cast in late August 2013 in a small role and filmed his scenes in Iceland.[4]


Director Christopher Nolan.

Development and financing[edit]

The premise for Interstellar was conceived by film producer Lynda Obst and theoretical physicist Kip Thorne, who were long-time friends. Based on Thorne's work, the two conceived a scenario about "the most exotic events in the universe suddenly becoming accessible to humans" that would attract filmmaker Steven Spielberg's interest in directing.[14] The film began development in June 2006 when Spielberg and Paramount Pictures announced plans for a science fiction film based on Thorne's treatment. Obst was attached to produce the film, which Variety said would "take several years to come together" before Spielberg directed it.[15] By March 2007, Jonathan Nolan was hired to write a screenplay for Interstellar.[16] To learn the science, Nolan studied relativity at the California Institute of Technology over the course of four years while writing the script.[17] Later in 2007, Thorne told The Australian that the film was "based on warped space-time". Thorne also said people wanted him to be cast as himself in the film.[18]

The film remained in development for several years. In January 2013, Christopher Nolan entered negotiations with Paramount and Warner Bros. to direct Interstellar.[19] Nolan said he wanted to encourage again the goal of human spaceflight.[2] He intended to write a screenplay based on his own idea that he would merge with his brother's screenplay.[20] He cited the films 2001: A Space Odyssey, Star Wars, and Blade Runner as influences on Interstellar.[21] By the following March, Nolan was confirmed to direct Interstellar, which would be produced under his label Syncopy and Lynda Obst Productions.[22]

Though Paramount and Warner Bros. are traditionally rival studios, Warner Bros., who released Nolan's Batman films and works with Nolan's Syncopy, sought a stake in Nolan's production of Interstellar for Paramount. Warner Bros. agreed to give Paramount its rights to co-finance the next film in the Friday the 13th horror franchise and to have a stake in a future film based on the TV series South Park. Warner Bros. also agreed to let Paramount co-finance "a to-be-determined A-list Warners property".[23] In August 2013, sources reported that Legendary Pictures finalized an agreement with Warner Bros. to finance approximately 25 percent of the film's production. Although it failed to renew its eight-year production partnership with Warner Bros., Legendary reportedly agreed to forego financing for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice in exchange for the stake in Interstellar.[24]


Nolan filmed Interstellar with anamorphic 35mm and IMAX film photography.[1] IMAX cameras were used for Interstellar more than any of Nolan's previous films. The director had practical locations built to minimize the use of computer-generated imagery, such as the interior of a space shuttle.[10] Some sequences of the film were shot with an IMAX camera installed in the nose cone of a Learjet.[25] Nolan, known to keep details of his productions secret, strove to ensure secrecy for Interstellar. The Wall Street Journal reported, "The famously secretive filmmaker has gone to extreme lengths to guard the script to ... Interstellar, just as he did with the blockbuster Dark Knight trilogy."[26] As one security measure, Interstellar was filmed under the name Flora's Letter.[27] For the film's production, cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema was hired for Interstellar. Wally Pfister had been the cinematographer on all of Nolan's past films but was not available for Interstellar due to working on his directorial debut Transcendence.[28]

Part of the filming in Iceland took place at the Svínafellsjökull glacier

The film's principal photography was scheduled to last for four months.[4] It began on August 6, 2013 in the province of Alberta, Canada.[24] Towns in Alberta where filming took place included Nanton, Longview, Lethbridge, and Okotoks. Mathew McConaughey filmed scenes in Fort Macleod.[29] In Okotoks, filming took place at the Seaman Stadium and the Olde Town Plaza. Filming in the province lasted till September 9, 2013 and involved hundreds of extras as well as approximately 130 crew members, most of them local.[27] Filming also took place in Iceland, where Nolan had previously filmed scenes for his 2005 film Batman Begins.[30] In Iceland, a two-week shoot was scheduled.[4] A crew of approximately 350 people, including 130 locals, worked on the shoot in Iceland. Locations included the Svínafellsjökull glacier and the town of Klaustur.[31][32] After the crew finished filming in Iceland, it moved to Los Angeles, California to film for 54 days. Filming in the state was relatively unusual since California's tax credit was not available for films with a budget greater than $75 million. Filming locations include the Westin Bonaventure Hotel and Suites, the Los Angeles Convention Center, a Sony Pictures soundstage in Culver City, and a private residence in Altadena.[33] Filming concluded in December 2013, and Nolan started editing the film for its release in 2014.[34]

Musical score[edit]

Composer Hans Zimmer, who scored Nolan's Batman film trilogy, is scoring Interstellar. Zimmer and Nolan plan to move away from the trilogy's scores and to come up with a unique one. Zimmer said, "The textures, the music, and the sounds, and the thing we sort of created has sort of seeped into other people's movies a bit, so it's time to reinvent. The endless string [ostinatos] need to go by the wayside, the big drums are probably in the bin."[35] Zimmer also said that Nolan did not provide him a script or any plot details for writing music for the film and instead gave the composer "one page of text" that "had more to do with [Zimmer's] story than the plot of the movie".[36]

Visual effects[edit]

The visual effects company Double Negative, which developed visual effects for Nolan's 2010 film Inception, is working on Interstellar.[37]



The teaser trailer for Interstellar debuted on December 14, 2013 and featured clips related to space exploration, accommodated by a voiceover by Matthew McConaughey as his character.[38] The theatrical trailer debuted on May 5, 2014 at the Lockheed Martin IMAX Theater at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.[39] It was made available online later in the month, and for the week ending May 19, it had the most viewings for a trailer with over 19.5 million views on YouTube.[40] The studio will also release Interstellar: Beyond Time and Space, a book by Mark Cotta Vaz about the making of the film, on November 11, 2014.[41]

Director Christopher Nolan and actor Matthew McConaughey made first-time appearances at Comic-Con in July 2014 to promote Interstellar. The Hollywood Reporter said prior to Nolan's appearance, the director had "not spoken about his new movie at all" to keep details secret.[42] The pair participated in a brief discussion and screened a third trailer of the film.[43] Following the convention, the studio posted the third trailer online and also launched a complex interactive website.[44] The Hollywood Reporter said the website was "both cryptic and, just maybe, filled with hidden meaning". It reported that online users uncovered a star chart related to the Apollo 11 moon landing.[45]

Theatrical run[edit]

Interstellar is scheduled to be released in theaters in November 2014. It will be released in Belgium, France, and Switzerland on November 5, 2014 and will be released in additional territories in the following days, including the United Kingdom on November 6, 2014 and North America (United States and Canada) on November 7, 2014.[46] Paramount Pictures will distribute the film in North America, and Warner Bros. will distribute it in the remaining territories.[1] Though Paramount stated in January 2014 that it would stop releasing films on film stock and instead distribute in digital format, it also stated it would make exceptions for certain films including Interstellar, which will be released in both formats.[47] Interstellar will be projected on IMAX film in approximately 50 of the over 800 IMAX theaters around the world.[48]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Fleming, Mike (August 13, 2013). "Christopher Nolan Starts 'Interstellar'". Retrieved August 13, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b Fritz, Ben (July 24, 2014). "Director Christopher Nolan Causes Stir While Promoting 'Interstellar' at Comic-Con". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved July 25, 2014. 
  3. ^ Fleming, Mike (March 28, 2013). "Is Christopher Nolan Giving 'Interstellar' Lead To Matthew McConaughey?". Retrieved January 20, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d Jagernauth, Keith (August 28, 2013). "Exclusive: Matt Damon Joins Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar,' Lines Up Directorial Debut 'The Foreigner'". The Playlist (Indiewire Network). Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  5. ^ Sneider, Jeff (August 2, 2013). "Christopher Nolan Casts 'Game of Thrones' Actor in 'Interstellar'". The Wrap (The Wrap News, Inc.). Retrieved February 7, 2014. 
  6. ^ "Highlights of Starfury Panel With Aaron Douglas, Leah Cairns & Stephanie Jacobsen". Nerdgeist. September 19, 2013. Retrieved February 11, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Actor William Devane Has A Part In Interstellar". Interstellar-movie. November 11, 2013. Retrieved February 11, 2014. 
  8. ^ accessed 7/30/14
  9. ^ Fleming, Mike (April 9, 2013). "Anne Hathaway To Star With Matthew McConaughey in Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar'". Retrieved August 14, 2013. 
  10. ^ a b McClintock, Pamela (March 26, 2014). "CinemaCon: Christopher Nolan Talks 'Interstellar,' Plugs Film Over Digital in Hollywood Reporter Q&A". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 27, 2014. 
  11. ^ McClintock, Pamela (March 26, 2014). "CinemaCon: Christopher Nolan Talks 'Interstellar,' Plugs Film Over Digital in Hollywood Reporter Q&A". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved April 11, 2014. 
  12. ^ Sullivan, Kevin P. (August 13, 2013). "Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' Begins Filming With All-Star Cast". MTV Movies Blog (MTV). Retrieved August 14, 2013. 
  13. ^ Vyavahare, Renuka (August 22, 2013). "Why Irrfan missed out on a Christopher Nolan film". The Times of India. 
  14. ^ Fernandez, Jay A. (March 28, 2007). "Writer with real stars in his eyes". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 14, 2014. 
  15. ^ Fleming, Michael (June 14, 2006). "Space chase pic on Par launch pad". Variety. 
  16. ^ Fernandez, Jay (March 24, 2007). "Spielberg, Nolan plan sci-fi project". Los Angeles Times. 
  17. ^ What Does A Showrunner Bring To A Deserted Island? (Television production). Larry King Now. Ora TV. April 15, 2014. Event occurs at 3:48. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  18. ^ Dayton, Leigh (July 14, 2007). "Warped in La La Land". The Australian. 
  19. ^ Sneider, Jonathan (January 9, 2013). "Nolan in talks for 'Interstellar'". Variety. 
  20. ^ Fleming, Mike (January 10, 2013). "The Migratory Habits Of 800-Pound Gorilla Oscar Directors And The Films They Make". Retrieved August 14, 2013. 
  21. ^ Staff (July 25, 2014). "Comic-Con 2014: Christopher Nolan, Matthew McConaughey surprise fans with unannounced 'Interstellar' panel". New York Daily News. Retrieved July 26, 2014. 
  22. ^ Hayden, Erik (March 8, 2013). "It's Official: Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' to be Warner Bros., Paramount Co-Production". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  23. ^ Kit, Borys; Masters, Kim (June 5, 2013). "Warner Bros. Gives Up 'Friday the 13th' Rights to Board Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar'". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  24. ^ a b Siegel, Tatiana; Galloway, Stephen (August 14, 2013). "Legendary Scores Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' in Warner Bros. Divorce". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  25. ^ Lussier, Germain (November 18, 2013). "Christopher Nolan Installed an IMAX Camera on a Learjet for ‘Interstellar’". /Film. Retrieved April 10, 2014. 
  26. ^ Fritz, Ben (October 13, 2013). "Hollywood Steps Up Security to Keep Scripts Secret". The Wall Street Journal. 
  27. ^ a b Volmers, Eric (August 22, 2013). "Matthew McConaughey, John Lithgow on Okotoks set of Christopher Nolan's Interstellar". Calgary Herald. 
  28. ^ Jagernauth, Keith (April 23, 2013). "'The Fighter' DoP Hoyte Van Hoytema Is Wally Pfister's Replacement On Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar'". The Playlist (Indiewire). Retrieved August 14, 2013. 
  29. ^ Hollywood star Matthew McConaughey in Fort Macleod to film scene from ‘Interstellar’
  30. ^ Verrier, Richard; Horn, John (April 2, 2014). "Hollywood is hot for Iceland". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 10, 2014. 
  31. ^ Staff (September 21, 2013). "Interstellar shots finished in Iceland". News of Iceland. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  32. ^ Staff (September 9, 2013). "Hiking Paths to be Closed for Nolan Film Shoot". IcelandReview. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  33. ^ Verrier, Richard (November 27, 2013). "Westin Bonaventure Hotel hosts 'Interstellar' movie filming". Los Angeles Times. 
  34. ^ Zeitchik, Steven (December 19, 2013). "Star of Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' notes film's 'major scope'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 20, 2013. 
  35. ^ Chitwood, Adam (October 14, 2013). "Hans Zimmer Talks Christopher Nolan's Interstellar and the Influence of the Dark Knight Trilogy Score on Blockbuster Filmmaking". (Demand Film). Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  36. ^ Khatchatourian, Maane (April 5, 2014). "Christopher Nolan Kept 'Interstellar' Plot Secret from Composer Hans Zimmer". Variety. Retrieved April 10, 2014. 
  37. ^ Giardina, Carolyn (June 25, 2014). "VFX Shakeup: Prime Focus World, Double Negative to Merge". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 26, 2014. 
  38. ^ McIntyre, Gina (December 14, 2013). "'Interstellar' trailer: McConaughey ponders space travel, human spirit". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  39. ^ Hornaday, Ann (May 5, 2014). "'Interstellar' trailer premieres at D.C.'s Air & Space Museum". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  40. ^ Lewis, Andy (May 23, 2014). "Trailer Report: 'Interstellar' Soars With 19.5 Million Views in First Week". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  41. ^ Kramer, Miriam (May 13, 2014). "New 'Interstellar' Book Will Go Behind the Scenes of Sci-Fi Film". Retrieved July 11, 2014. 
  42. ^ Kit, Borys (July 24, 2014). "Comic-Con: Christopher Nolan Makes Surprise Appearance to Promote 'Interstellar'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 26, 2014. 
  43. ^ Buchanan, Kyle (July 24, 2014). "Christopher Nolan Just Brought a New Interstellar Trailer to Comic-Con". Vulture (New York). Retrieved July 25, 2014. 
  44. ^ Staff (July 30, 2014). "New Trailer Debuts for Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' (Video)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 30, 2014. 
  45. ^ McMillan, Graeme (July 30, 2014). "'Interstellar' Website Invites Users to Look Around and Find Answers". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 30, 2014. 
  46. ^ "Interstellar Movie 2014 – Worldwide Release Dates". Warner Bros. Pictures. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  47. ^ Verrier, Richard (January 28, 2014). "Paramount Pictures to make some exceptions to all-digital policy". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 28, 2014. 
  48. ^ Lussier, Germain (June 20, 2014). "Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' Will Be Projected in 70mm IMAX at About 50 Locations". /Film. Retrieved June 21, 2014. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Vaz, Mark Cotta (November 11, 2014). Interstellar: Beyond Time and Space. Book about the making of the film. Running Press. ISBN 978-0-7624-5683-3. 

External links[edit]