Release Date: July 16 (in conventional theaters and IMAX) Studio: Warner Brothers Genre: Sci-Fi Action Director:Christopher Nolan Writer: Christopher Nolan Cast:Leonardo DiCaprio, Ken Watanabe, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Marion Cotillard, Ellen Page, Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy, Tom Berenger, Michael Caine, Lukas Haas, Dileep Rao Studio Description: An executive becomes involved in a blackmailing scandal. • Watch the Trailer
Analysis: Following the record-breaking success of The Dark Knight in 2008, writer-director Christopher Nolan decided to step away from the franchise for a few years to make Inception, based off his own original idea. Thus far, the picture has been shrouded in secrecy, with its tagline ("Your mind is the scene of the crime") and trailers giving away little other than that it's likely going to be a mind-bending sci-fi action movie in the vein of The Matrix.
In between Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, Christopher Nolan co-wrote and directed The Prestige, which grossed a respectable-but-far-from-blockbuster $53.1 million. A lot more is riding on Inception, though, as it features Leonardo DiCaprio, was filmed in six different countries and has a rumored production budget in excess of $200 million. Warner Bros., which had a record-breaking 2009 thanks to strong sales for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, The Hangover and The Blind Side, has enough confidence in Mr. Nolan that they are making Inception their big summer release, scheduling it for mid-July just like Dark Knight and Harry Potter before.
Expect a barrage of Inception advertising, both traditional and viral, leading up to July 16 in an effort to convince audiences to give an un-established property a chance. While it may appear to be a hard sell, audiences recently proved they were willing to turn out in large numbers for a sci-fi picture not based on a pre-established property when they made Avatar an all time blockbuster. Unless its marketing makes it out to be a convoluted, obscure mess, Inception has an excellent chance of finding success.