“He’ll try to summon real demons”: Christopher Nolan’s Wish to Make a Horror Film has Fans Worried for His Lack of Reliance on CGI

Christopher Nolan says he would love to make a horror film

"He'll try to summon real demons": Christopher Nolan's Wish to Make a Horror Film has Fans Worried for His Lack of Reliance on CGI


  • Christopher Nolan said he'd love to make a horror film with an exceptional idea.
  • Fans worried his practical effects-focused style may not suit CGI-heavy horror.
  • Possibilities excite fans given Nolan’s genre-reinventing reputation.
Show More
Featured Video

Renowned director Christopher Nolan recently revealed he has aspirations to make a horror film at some point in the future. Though Nolan has never directed a fully-fledged fright fest, his acclaimed films like Inception and Tenet contain mind-bending elements adjacent to psychological thrillers. And entries such as Batman Begins harness horror imagery and jump scares on occasion. 


Christopher Nolan Sets Sights on Horror, Fans Worry About Practical Effects

Christopher Nolan via IMAX
Christopher Nolan via IMAX

According to The Hollywood Reporter, during a recent conversation with the British Film Institute, acclaimed director Christopher Nolan revealed he “would love” to make a horror film at some point. While Nolan’s passionate fanbase welcomed the news, some also expressed concerns that the filmmaker known for practical effects and in-camera tricks would have to embrace CGI to pull off a convincing fright fest.

“I think horror films are very interesting because they depend on very cinematic devices,” Nolan told BFI. “It’s really about [provoking] a visceral response to things.” 

He explained that the genre requires “a really exceptional idea” before he’d move forward with such a project. Still, he finds horror “interesting from a cinematic point of view” given the creative liberties it allows.


While best known today for superhero epics and mind-bending sci-fi, Nolan’s filmography spans an impressive range. His breakout Memento was a neo-noir puzzle. The Prestige thrillingly explored rival magicians. Inception blended action and heist genres. And Dunkirk took on the immersive World War II experience. Nolan has even dabbled in space travel and biography. This diversity shows his flexibility across genres.

Could a Director Famous for Practical Effects Pull Off Convincing Horror?

While none of Nolan’s previous films are outright horror, many contain horror elements. Take Batman Begins, with its nightmarish Scarecrow scenes. The villain’s mind-altering fear toxin lent itself to disturbing visuals and audio that terrified young viewers. And in last year’s Oppenheimer, the atomic bomb inventor grapples with horrifying visions of people’s skin melting off.  


However, some fans have expressed skepticism that Nolan’s signature practical effects-heavy style could translate effectively to the modern CGI-driven horror landscape. Still, knowing Nolan’s pedigree for game-changing cinema across genres, anticipation is high for what ingenious concept he might cook up to terrify audiences. Here are a few fan reactions: 



But could Nolan convincingly sustain pure horror without his signature practical effects? Fans have noted the filmmaker’s disdain for CGI and digital trickery. Many beloved horror franchises like Evil Dead and Saw rely heavily on physical effects to sell their gruesome scenes rather than CGI. 

Christopher Nolan's Momento
Christopher Nolan’s Momento

Some fans jokingly expressed worries that Nolan’s aversion to CGI could prompt him to rely on dangerous practical effects for horror, like actually summoning demons. Others felt Nolan would likely avoid the paranormal in favor of a psychological thriller since ghosts and spirits are hard to authentically depict without digital effects. But the overall sentiment was lighthearted excitement, trusting that whatever Nolan creates would captivate audiences as his films tend to do.

Currently, Nolan and his crew are celebrating the victories of Oppenheimer, one of the most talked about movies of 2023. Oppenheimer has also broken a lot of business records. 


Written by Nivedita Dubey

Articles Published: 82

Nivedita Dubey has 3 years of extensive experience in copywriting and content writing. She has written news articles for websites like, essentially sports, Comic Book Resources, Nerdstash etc.