Over his two decade-plus career, Christopher Nolan has more or less gotten sterling press, from glowing reviews of his popular movies to fawning profiles that treat him as a brainy genius who makes movies that play like intricate puzzles. He even loves MacGruber! That all changed on Monday, though. After an interview with Anne Hathaway, veteran of The Dark Knight Rises, went viral, in which she said he doesn’t allow people to sit when filming his movies, Nolan suddenly got the worst reviews of his career.
The news came via a chat Hathaway did with her Les Misérables co-star Hugh Jackman for Variety. Jackman was talking about strict directors, and he casually mentioned those he’s worked with who forbid cellphones on set, namely Darren Aronofsky and Denis Villeneuve. Hathaway pointed out he forgot Nolan, with whom he worked on The Prestige. It also made her think about something else he bans:
Chris also doesn’t allow chairs. I worked with him twice. He doesn’t allow chairs, and his reasoning is, if you have chairs, people will sit, and if they’re sitting, they’re not working. I mean, he has these incredible movies in terms of scope and ambition and technical prowess and emotion. It always arrives at the end under schedule and under budget. I think he’s onto something with the chair thing.
Hathaway likely mentioned it off-handedly, as an eccentric quirk, not as something that particularly bothered her. After all, sitting is bad for the body! Then again, absolutely no sitting is a bit much. And with that, Twitter had finally come for Christopher Nolan.
There was simple mockery:
rt to scare christopher nolan pic.twitter.com/ulRtf7ix26
— taran // BLM // ACAB (@thebatman_2021) June 29, 2020
That time we pranked Christopher Nolan on set pic.twitter.com/tMp7wVAnrd
— Bill Corbett (@BillCorbett) June 29, 2020
— wyatt / SKATE 4 REAL (@velvetxero) June 29, 2020
Guys you don’t understand, when Christopher Nolan was younger, a chair crashed through his window, frightening him
— Brian Lynch (@BrianLynch) June 29, 2020
Preschool teacher: “Today we are going to play musical chairs”
Christopher Nolan: pic.twitter.com/Fc1sW9tAMY
— Lunwi (@Lunwi88) June 29, 2020
And the use of popular GIFs.
The actors on Christopher Nolan next movie when he sees why he’s trending. pic.twitter.com/qMzrB6mzHy
— Travon Free (@Travon) June 29, 2020
Some were even more pointed in their criticism, thinking he sounds like a bad chain store manager.
“IF YOU HAVE TIME TO LEAN YOU HAVE TIME TO CLEAN” -every asshole retail manager you have ever worked for in your life AND christopher nolan, apparently https://t.co/ysgEbS9IRN
— dawnya (@xo_pinkishheart) June 29, 2020
grocery store manager Christopher Nolan https://t.co/btrgEULnQT
— Nathan Bernhardt (@jonbernhardt) June 29, 2020
christopher nolan made a superhero movie with a veiled *protestors and revolutionaries are evil* message and praised the virtue of cops, so it’s not much of a surprise he doesn’t care about workers or working conditions
— Eric Eidelstein (@ericeidelstein) June 29, 2020
Some used his own movies against him.
“It’s simple … we remove the chairs.” – Christopher Nolan, probably pic.twitter.com/whcYHHjIz0
— The Ringer (@ringer) June 29, 2020
And some pointed out that there’s an awful lot of sitting in the films of Christopher Nolan.
Iconic sitting-in-chairs moments from Christopher Nolan films: a series. pic.twitter.com/IXjuur9mKw
— Nick de Semlyen (@NickdeSemlyen) June 29, 2020
Meanwhile, perhaps one day we’ll get to learn how many chairs there are in the perpetually delayed Tenet.