No one was expecting Warner Bros to release a teaser for Christopher Nolan’s upcoming film, Tenet, when they sat down on their seats to watch the latest instalment in the Fast & Furious series, Hobbs & Shaw.
Especially since the film is still being shot. But now that the teaser has been released, and bootlegged online, multiple theories are being floated on the internet, the most intriguing of which suggests that the film is a secret sequel to Nolan’s 2010 blockbuster, Inception.
A Hollywood Reporter story suggests that several details, such as the film’s tagline, its enigmatic premise, and whatever little could be gleaned from the one-minute teaser, seem to suggest that the film is set in the same universe as Inception.
“Time has come for a new protagonist,” a title reads in the teaser, implying that the protagonist is replacing someone else, perhaps someone we are already familiar with. Not to mention the subliminal undertones of the word ‘time’, which was a key theme in Inception.
Nolan, according to THR, has expressed his desire to further explore the world he set up in Inception, about an elaborate heist ‘set within the architecture of the human mind’.
Tenet is said to be an espionage movie with science-fiction elements. It is Nolan’s most expensive original film, its reported $225 million price tag eclipsing Inception’s $185 million budget. His last Batman movie, however, remains his most expensive.
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Another story on ComicBook.com offers a more complete theory as to how the two films could be connected. “Tenet could reveal that the dream tech developed for the military in Inception has gone even further, or been developed into something even more dangerous, this time allowing spy missions to not work in the realm of dreams but possibly travel through time.
Perhaps the events of Inception had terrible, unforeseen consequences, leading to a next generation having to deal with things.
The idea of dealing with a next generation is also intriguing as Nolan has notably shifted the focus of things in films such as Interstellar from being the story of the “older” protagonist and seen a focus in younger generations being the heroes,” the story stated.
Tenet is slated for release in July 2020, exactly a decade after Inception. It stars John David Washington, Robert Pattinson, Dimple Kapadia, Elizabeth Debicki, Kenneth Branagh and Michael Caine, who also appeared in Inception.