“I think we were both very struck by how sad it was”: Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar Was a Fight Against America’s Biggest Conspiracy Theory Involving Stanley Kubrick

The film chronicles the intergalactic journey taken by a father to save the world from everlasting hunger.

christopher nolan’s interstellar was a fight against america’s biggest conspiracy theory involving stanley kubrick


  • Christopher Nolan’s filmography has the common theme of being a cautionary tale against the overuse of technology.
  • However, one of his most celebrated films Interstellar is regarded as a celebration of humanity’s curious spirit.
  • Nolan mentioned that the film was a response to conspiracy theories surrounding the moon landing.
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Christopher Nolan last directed this year’s big-budget biopic Oppenheimer, which starred Cillian Murphy, Emily Blunt, Robert Downey Jr., and Matt Damon in lead roles. The film earned almost a billion dollars at the box office and has become one of the highest-grossing biopics of all time.


Be it his previous outing Tenet or one of his most celebrated films Inception, Nolan tends to lean towards the danger of going too far ahead with technology. However, with his sci-fi epic Interstellar, he seemed to have turned the other way and wanted to comment on a popular conspiracy theory that involved his favorite director Stanley Kubrick.

Also read: “It’s not the sort of thing that I like to do”: Christopher Nolan Was Amazed by His Own Choice for Interstellar’s Most Devastating Scene


Did Stanley Kubrick Direct The Moon-Landing?

Stanley Kubrick
Stanley Kubrick

In 1969, the USA made history by completing a manned mission to the moon, with astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin being the first people to step on the moon. The Apollo 11 Missions were historic and were one of the crowning moments of human history. The USA has always basked in the glory of this achievement.

However, there has also been a massive conspiracy that the moon landing was faked and was a hoax. The intent behind the faking was attributed to the USA wanting to win the Space Race with the Soviet Union, who had a headstart when they launched the first manned mission into space.

Also read: Christopher Nolan Gave His Daughter One of the Most Disturbing Roles in Oppenheimer For a Sad Reason

A still from The Shining
A still from The Shining

Many believed that the mission to the moon was impossible to do with the technology at the time. The conspiracy theory has been a pop-cultural phenomenon at this point, with no source. But if the moon landing was faked, what about the video evidence? A branch of this conspiracy theory was that ace director Stanley Kubrick directed the moon landing video.

Kubrick was known for his ultra-realistic special effects in the space epic 2001: A Space Odyssey, which came out a year before the Apollo missions. Hence, many believed that he was the perfect person to be hired to make a realistic moon landing video in order to crush the Soviets.

Also read: Christopher Nolan’s Billion-Dollar Oppenheimer Success Baffles Director 40 Years After 1 Classic Space Epic


Christopher Nolan Wanted to Squash The Idea That The Moon Landing Was Faked

Christopher Nolan on the sets of Oppenheimer
Christopher Nolan on the sets of Oppenheimer

The conspiracy theory of Stanley Kubrick has gained traction mostly due to the fact that the director seemingly included references to the Apollo missions and the hoax in his horror film The Shining. Many minute details in the film seem to be a reference to the Apollo missions, including changing the haunted room number in the book from 217 to 237, as a reference to the moon being 237,000 miles away from Earth.

Christopher Nolan, in a recent interview with The Atlantic, revealed that his sci-fi epic Interstellar was in a way a response to the conspiracy theories surrounding the moon landing. The film is set in a futuristic society where food has run out and most of the humans have resorted to farming, with the school curriculum making it official that the moon landing was faked.

Nolan mentioned that he had gone to watch a documentary about the Apollo missions in Hong Kong along with his brother Jonathan Nolan, who wrote the screenplay of the film. He said,


“There’s a part about the ridiculous idea that the moon landings were faked, and I think we were both very struck by how sad it was that the filmmakers felt the need to address such an absurd conspiracy theory, and how that diminished the achievements of everyone involved. This fed very directly into the character of Cooper and his idea that society had started to devalue the spirit of exploration.”

Christopher Nolan’s epic film sees the protagonist Cooper travel to different solar systems and dimensions to save the world from hunger. Nolan’s film is the one movie in his filmography that optimistically celebrates the achievement of technology and innovation rather than seeing the dangers of it.

Also read: “No truth to all those rumors”: Christopher Nolan Breaks Millions of Hearts, Confirms He’s Not Directing the Next James Bond Movie


Written by Nishanth A

Articles Published: 850

Nishanth A is a Media, English and Psychology graduate from Bangalore. He is an avid DC fanboy and loves the films of Christopher Nolan. He has published over 400 articles on FandomWire. When he's not fixating on the entire filmography of a director, he tries to write and direct films.