I don’t usually play the lottery. I think of it as a government-imposed tax on hope stripping more money they don’t have from those who can least afford it. I did play it last night as the jackpot was over £55 million. I got 4 lines. Do you know what I won? F@#k all! Not even a free re-entry or a £3.50 consolation prize. Zilch. Meanwhile, Christopher Nolan beats that jackpot win by some considerable distance, by being at the absolute top of his game.

Not only is Nolan’s Oppenheimer expected to dominate the line-up, but showing how Oscar bait is usually out of step with audiences, if it wins it will be the highest-grossing Best Picture winner since The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. That movie is now from 21 years ago. Christ, I feel old again all of a sudden.

Nolan is only five years older than me, but before I go away and wonder what the hell I am doing with my life, first let’s look at a report in Forbes that talks about how much he will make from Oppenheimer.

The report says he will earn 15% of Oppenheimer’s “first-dollar gross” which he contracted for due to taking reduced fees for directing, writing, and producing upfront. This makes him either very smart or very lucky.


The article talks about agent and lawyer fees, but says he will walk away with a cool $72 million pre-tax from the box office, home sales, and licensing of the movie. That number then goes up as the movie gets re-sold to streamers and is licensed on TV for years to come.

Also, and this is just personal speculation, it is highly unlikely that Nolan will be receiving that check as a private individual. It will be paid to a company that has him as a director. You know the drill from here.

Nolan will already be circling his next project. It is known he wants to make a Bond movie and the producers would love him to. The issue is that the Bond movies operate within a framework, and Nolan would want almost complete control of every aspect, making the partnership unlikely.

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