Matt Damon has a solution to the ‘Oppenheimer’ versus ‘Barbie’ dilemma

Matt Damon recently spoke to Vanity Fair ahead of the release of his big summer movie. No, not Barbie. Matt Damon is not in Barbie. Matt Damon has some kind of major role in Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer. Damon plays General Leslie Groves, who was director of the Manhattan Project. Matty D has never worked with Nolan before, and he enjoyed the experience and it sounds like he enjoyed playing his character too. The funniest part of the interview is the fact that Matty D didn’t realize or hear anything about the fact that Oppenheimer comes out on the same day as Greta Gerwig’s Barbie. There’s a whole thing about “Oppenheimer boyfriend/Barbie girlfriend,” about people choosing which movie to see. Well, Matty D has a solution.

His character in Oppenheimer: “Groves was a military man, and so much of that ethos is about compartmentalization and the need to know all of the stuff. And the scientists were all about sharing information so that they can get the truth right…there was this constant tension. The scientists felt it was actually necessary to be sharing all the information that they could, and the military felt we had to try to make whatever gains we could without giving away any of our secrets.”

On Christopher Nolan’s period-accuracy: “He’s so exacting. There’s been so much work before you get there, and you can feel it when you walk on [the set]. The level of detail is really exquisite,” explains Damon. The filmmaker reproduced bomb tests without using CGI; hired real scientists as extras; filmed inside historical Manhattan Project buildings—including the home where Oppenheimer, his wife, and two children actually lived; and recreated Los Alamos, a remote site in northern New Mexico where Oppenheimer ran his secret laboratory.

What it was like filming on those sets: “You could see over the horizon the actual testing site and where the original town was. Ruth [De Jong], our production designer, basically rebuilt the town, so we had an active kind of town to work in. It reminded me of shooting [Saving] Private Ryan in the sense that [Steven] Spielberg would rebuild these areas and we had carte blanche—we could go anywhere we wanted to go. So, Chris had the flexibility to shoot as he wanted and needed to all around the town. It was fully immersive.”

Filming again in New Mexico. “It’s beautiful yet desolate. It’s where Georgia O’Keeffe went to paint, basically, so it has very much that feeling. It’s got that expansive desert beauty. It’s a remarkable place.”

Barbie vs. Oppenheimer: “This is the first I’m hearing about it, actually. I haven’t paid any attention to that,” he says. Even so, he offers a solution. “People are allowed to go see two movies in a weekend. Oppenheimer is one of them!” he says with a laugh. As a parent of four daughters, though, one may assume his family will choose Barbie. How does that make him feel? “I’ll have to ask them that. If that’s the case, they’ll see two movies that weekend!”

[From Vanity Fair]

Do y’all ever see two movies in a weekend? I would do that when I was a lot younger, and there was a Dollar Movie Theater about 15 minutes away. But these days? With the prices and the hassle of going to the big movie theater? Nope. It’s too much to even go to see one movie, let alone two. Still, I’m sure his girls will definitely be on Team Barbie. As for the stuff about Oppenheimer… I’m actually curious if Matt will stick out like a sore thumb? Can he pull off this kind of period character in this context? I’m not sure.

Meanwhile, did you know that Damon was offered the lead role in Avatar, the role which eventually went to Sam Worthington? James Cameron wanted Damon and Cameron offered him a 10% backend. Damon turned it down and he recently admitted: “It’s the dumbest thing an actor ever did in the history of acting.” I mean… if he wasn’t feeling it, so be it. But yeah, he could have made hundreds of millions of dollars from it. Whoops.

Photos courtesy of Cover Images.

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15 Responses to “Matt Damon has a solution to the ‘Oppenheimer’ versus ‘Barbie’ dilemma”

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  1. Dutch says:

    It’s rare that there are two movies I want to see in a weekend anymore, but I used to do it quite a bit. In the summer (and in the city where I live) you can catch a noon and a 4 p.m. movie both at the matinee price. I don’t get drinks or snacks at the movies, so I can get by doing that for around $25 or less. Oppenheimer might make a double feature difficult since it’s so long, but I’ll probably see both opening weekend.

  2. Grandma Susan says:

    Nope. I can’t imagine anyone other than Sam Worthington being Jake Sully. Especially not Damon.

  3. NJGR says:

    I’m interested in both movies, but Barbie probably won’t give me nightmares.

  4. Ameerah M says:

    I used to do double features all the time. It was something my family enjoyed doing when I was a kid and I carried it into my twenties. I would do it now – but both films would have to be worth it. Tickets are expensive! Back in the day I used to be able to do a double feature for less than $20. That is no longer the case.

  5. Steph says:

    Matt Damon has not been roasted enough for his involvement in the CryptoDotCom scam.

    • paintergal says:

      Cannot explain why but he just gives me the creeps after watch their Greenlight Project years ago. Afflect actually came off as more open and intelligent.

  6. Sass says:

    This is what I was hoping his answer would be and honestly I’m gonna do it. Let me relive my childhood summers! Why can’t we have both?

  7. Lemons says:

    Movies are way too long nowadays. I can’t devote that amount of time to two movies in one weekend.

  8. HeyKay says:

    I never think of Matt Damon really. I certainly would not go to a movie just because he’s in it.

    I do think Oppenheimer will be an interesting movie, even tho I know the story.
    Cillian Murphy, as an actor, is miles ahead of MD in acting talent.
    Nolan has a proven track record and can helm a serious plot/big budget movie very well.
    Still not going to see it. I’ll watch on streaming.

    Barbie? Zero interest.

    I am stunned IRL that I’ve chatted with several folks in their 20’s who have no idea who Oppenheimer was or the history.

  9. Becks1 says:

    I mean, I’m not going to see two movies in a weekend, LOL, but I appreciate his response. It’s a good response and seems a bit TIC. He’s saying people dont have to choose, people can enjoy both of those movies. And I plan to! I may not see both opening weekend (okay I prob wont see either lol) but I do want to see both in the theaters. Its been a long time since there have been multiple movies that I want to see in a theater like this.

    I could not care less about seeing MI in a theater, lol.

  10. Twin Falls says:

    Matt Damon is just so boring and also irritating?

    I guess if you can find discounted matinee tickets and sneak in snacks you could see two movies in a day without feeling you paid the equivalent of a theme park admission.

  11. A says:

    Matt Damon has worked with Christopher Nolan before — he had a big cameo in Interstellar.

  12. JanetDR says:

    2 movies in a night is what you get at a drive in! Bet they won’t pair these two though.

  13. Fig says:

    I got my ticket to see Barbie on Thursday! I am choosing to see it in a crappier movie theater because it’s cheaper- movies are expensive now

  14. Alejamx says:

    Interstellar , Damon and Nolan say hi!