Story details for the highly-anticipated Tenet confirm the mysterious film is director Christopher Nolan's quantum Cold War movie. Operating with a level of secrecy typically seen in only Marvel or Star Wars movies, Warner Bros. has kept many details surrounding Tenet's plot under lock and key. In fact, even Michael Caine, who actually appears in the film, has no idea what's happening. The most people have been able to glean about Tenet is that it is set in the world of international espionage, its characters are working to prevent some kind of catastrophic event (World War III?), and there's a time-travel element. Back in January, Warner Bros. released the first trailer that managed to give away nothing while still hyping up its impressive cast that includes John David Washington, Robert Pattinson, Elizabeth Debicki, Kenneth Branagh, and Caine.
Lately, however, the biggest mystery surrounding Tenet isn't about its plot, but whether it will get to hold onto its July 17 release date. As it stands at the time of this writing, Tenet is the next major studio film on a schedule that has seen most movies flee to later dates because of the coronavirus pandemic. The vast majority of movie theaters around the world are closed right now, though there's a hope they will reopen by July. Nolan has worked to keep Tenet's date, but some wonder if it's a futile effort. Warner Bros. is reportedly debating a delay and plans to make a decision soon.
Merchandising for Tenet seems to be proceeding as planned, as a behind the scenes book has been made available for pre-order on Amazon. The plot details are right in the title: The Secrets of Tenet: Inside Christopher Nolan's Quantum Cold War. The description for the book doesn't provide any further clues, aside from the mentions of a "time-bending" adventure and the final sentence, which describes Tenet as, "a film guaranteed to linger in the imagination long into the future . . . and perhaps the past.
Scene from Tenet
It sounds like Tenet's characters might be traveling into the past to prevent a nuclear war. Could this war have already come to pass, and the characters go back to stop it from happening again? Or is it more complex than that? Considering how it's Nolan at the helm, that could be likely. Between Memento and Inception, Nolan has proven his skill with intricate, original plots, and Tenet promises to fit in perfectly with his filmography.
With two months to go before Tenet's (potential) release, it's about time for its marketing campaign to begin in earnest. The lack of a second trailer is a bit worrying, though Warner Bros. is likely just holding it until they're absolutely certain Tenet can make its July date. Tenet could be just the thing audiences are looking for after this difficult, frustrating time. Luckily, even if Tenet doesn't arrive in July, viewers can be safe in the knowledge that they will get to see Tenet on the big screen at some point, and then they'll finally be able to unravel the mystery of its story.
Key Release Dates
- Tenet (2020)Release Date: Jul 17, 2020