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Oppenheimer dethrones Bohemian Rhapsody as the highest-grossing biopic ever

Despite its challenging subject matter and competition from other big releases, Oppenheimer has managed to make a significant mark in box-office history.


Christopher Nolan's Oppenheimer is not just breaking records; it's annihilating them. The film, which follows the tragic life of J. Robert Oppenheimer, the theoretical physicist behind the Manhattan Project, has now surpassed Bohemian Rhapsody to become the highest-grossing biopic in history.

On top of that, Oppenheimer is now the third highest-grossing film of the year, trailing behind Universal's unexpected hit video game adaptation, The Super Mario Bros. Movie and Greta Gerwig's Barbie. Not many saw this coming. Critics and fans alike were skeptical about Oppenheimer making a significant dent at the box office, especially given its release alongside Barbie and a week after Mission Impossible 7.

Add to that its dense subject matter and lengthy runtime, and it seemed like a recipe for a niche audience. But, as they say, never underestimate the power of Nolan. The IMAX exclusivity agreement, coupled with Nolan's reputation, has set the film on a trajectory that might just see it rake in $1 billion worldwide.

Oppenheimer isn't just a film; it's a reflection of our age. With global tensions simmering and nuclear arms proliferation at an all-time high, the Nolan biopic underscores the very real possibility of a chain reaction that could obliterate the entire human civilization. The stunning visuals, combined with a haunting score and Nolan's signature cinematography, make it more than just a cinematic experience. It's a wake-up call.

The film's ensemble cast comprises Cillian Murphy, Emily Blunt, Robert Downey Jr., Matt Damon, Florence Pugh, Josh Hartnett, Casey Affleck, and many others. Rami Malek, who previously won an Academy Award for his role as the illustrious Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody, makes a memorable appearance in Oppenheimer. While his role might be brief, it's certainly a very crucial and impactful one, further solidifying his position as one of the best working talents in Hollywood.

So, what's next for Oppenheimer? As it continues its theatrical run, the question on everyone's mind is whether it will join the coveted $1 billion club and, in addition, supplant Todd Phillips' The Joker as the highest-grossing R-rated film of all time. With competition from upcoming releases and its departure from theaters looming, it's definitely going to be a race against time.

Bohemian Rhapsody grossed $910.8 million at the worldwide box office.

While Oppenheimer has the potential to surpass both the Joker and Bohemian Rhapsody in box office earnings, it's worth noting that the latter two films achieved remarkable financial success despite their comparatively modest production budgets of under $70 million.

In contrast, Oppenheimer came with a hefty production cost of $100 million, not to mention an estimated marketing budget of another $100 million or more (and this doesn't even account for inflation).

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Caleb Sama

Caleb Sama // Articles: 483

Caleb is just your average Joe Schmo with a love for films and a knack for writing. He can tell you all about the latest blockbusters and indie flicks, but he'll also sneak in some obscure references and dad jokes that will make you groan and roll your eyes. His reviews are like a box of chocolates - you never know what you're gonna get, but you'll probably want more. Link up with Caleb on LinkedIn or check him out on Steam.
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