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Release of big summer film 'Tenet' pushed back again

'Tenet,' a thriller about an agency trying to ward off World War III, will now open on 12 August, Warner Bros. said Friday, after scrapping 17 July and then 31 July for its debut.

In this file photo taken on 12 May 2018 British director Christopher Nolan poses during a photocall at the 71st edition of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, southern France. Picture: AFP

NEW YORK - The release of the latest, super-secret movie by director Christopher Nolan - touted as the summer hit that would bring audiences back to theaters after months of coronavirus lockdowns - has been delayed again, until mid-August.

Tenet, a thriller about an agency trying to ward off World War III, will now open on 12 August, Warner Bros. said Friday, after scrapping 17 July and then 31 July for its debut.

The studio said in a statement that it will only release the movie "when exhibitors are ready and public health officials say it's time."

"In this moment what we need to be is flexible, and we are not treating this as a traditional movie release," the studio said.

The United States and Europe have slowly lifted restrictions put in place to curb the spread of the deadly virus, but new infection spikes are forcing some areas to clamp down again.

Warner Bros. says the movie will be allowed to "play longer" in theaters, part of what the studio predicts will be a "very different yet successful release strategy."

Tenet, which has hints of the supernatural, combines the big-budget spectacle and inventive storytelling that have made Nolan one of Hollywood's most sought-after directors.

From Memento to Inception" to Dunkirk by way of the Batman Dark Knight trilogy, the creative British filmmaker has carved out a singular niche on the industry.

His clout is reflected in the colossal $205 million budget that US media reported was lavished on Tenet, which stars John David Washington ("BlacKkKlansman"), Denzel Washington's son.

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