Christopher Nolan’s latest mindbender, Tenet, has spent the last four months effectively playing chicken with the pandemic that’s kept much of the nation in quarantine. Originally scheduled for mid-July — i.e., two days from this writing — it bumped itself to month’s end, then to mid-August. There, technically, it still stands, but with spikes popping up all over the country, and even places like New York City in no rush to reopen its movie theaters, some have wondered if Tenet will be bumped again.
Meanwhile, other parts of the globe, ones that dealt with the virus far better than the U.S. has, have either been opening up their movie theaters or planning to. This has led some to speculate whether Warner Bros. could always recoup the film’s immense budget by releasing it overseas while American theaters by and large remain shuttered. But as per a new report in Vulture about Tenet’s chances of hitting U.S. theaters this summer, Nolan (and Warner) have reportedly shot that possibility down.
As per Vulture, an international release was, at one point, considered. However, that was deemed a “risky strategy” given that we live “in an era of rampant overseas movie piracy.” That’s one reason why many major releases now — or, then, in the before-time when movie theaters were a thing — are released worldwide on the same day.
Nolan has also long been a champion of theatrical moviegoing. In late March, still relatively early into the American wing of the pandemic, he wrote a Washington Post op-ed calling the theatrical experience a “vital part of social life.” According to Vulture, Nolan also “wanted to help support American theaters in their time of need by sticking to the original plan.”
So there you have it. No one knows when anyone will see Tenet, but one thing’s for near-certain: It won’t be via a pirated copy from another part of the globe. Of course, there is always drive-ins…